It may be cold outside, but that doesn't mean your Valentine's Day celebrations can't be red hot. Here's TheSite.org's guide to keeping your romance at the right temperature.
Chill factor: Ice cold
"God knows how he managed it, but my ex-boyfriend of two-and-a-half years forgot all about Valentine's Day, despite it being all over the shops and all my hints about the pressies I'd bought him," laments Ali. So what did he do? Make it up at the last minute with a home-cooked meal by candlelight? Did he heck. "He made it up to me by buying me a bag of chips and saying: "This'll do, will you shut up now?""
Forgetting is one thing - showing no remorse that you forgot is another thing entirely. Get a last-minute card, flowers (just not from the garage, even in last-minute desperation), bottle of cava, knock up some pasta; there are loads of ways of digging yourself out of that hole. Arrogance most certainly isn't one of them.
Chill factor: Tepid
"My last boyfriend got me tickets to see a band I hated and he loved," says Kelly. "I got puked on and we broke up a week later because he was such a selfish git. It was the worst Valentine's ever." Let's hope so - we can't imagine one much worse.
So, lesson number two: put some thought into your day. There's really no point in spending a load of money on a gift that won't be appreciated - or worse - shows that you care more about yourself than your 'loved one'.
If you can't be arsed to even try and pretend that you care then something's really up. That's what happened to Gemma when her fella at the time decided he'd rather be out with his mates than getting romantic. "It was awful - we had a massive row and he dumped me because he said I was too clingy for not letting him go out with his mates," she says. It's not uncommon to have different ideas about how to spend Valentine's Day, but if neither of you can make some small compromises to make each other happy, how will you fare when you reach even bigger hurdles?
My last boyfriend got me tickets to see a band I hated and he loved. I got puked on and we broke up a week later because he was such a selfish git. It was the worst Valentine's ever.
Temperature: Warm and cosy
Conditions: Undivided attention and a little imagination
If you're not big on buying into the commercial side of Valentine's, you don't have to forgo it altogether. "It is easy to wish for gorgeous hotels and red roses, but it wouldn't make much difference to me as it is all just 'stuff'," says Laura. "I'd much prefer to spend a lovely, relaxing day with the person I love."
Funnily enough, this is the view that most men take, too. David hates the commercial side of Valentine's Day - but it doesn't stop him doing something memorable. "Last year we went to Whitby for the day, had some fish and chips and mulled wine in a pub, had a walk and then came home to some fantastic sex," he says. All without a whiff of fluffy teddies or padded cards.
Temperature: Red hot
Conditions: A ring and a speech
For some it's the height of cheese, others dream that they'll be whisked off their feet and down the aisle before they can say "red roses and chocolates". "I'd love to have a weekend away in a country hotel with a four-poster bed and my boyfriend to propose with a fab ring," says Kelly (anything's preferable to being puked on, huh?).
So what's the appeal of the big question being popped on February 14? "It would just be so romantic for a guy to get down on one knee on Valentine's Day," dreams Stacey, "but I suppose that only ever happens to other people on the TV."
So what do the men think about all this talk of proposals? "Provided you were going to get married anyway it's so much cheaper in the long run - you just buy one combined present," points out Andrew. "People should think these things through." Who said romance was dead?
Written by Hannah Jolliffe
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