The pressure to offer an appropriate gift is not quite so pretty.*
Nor is the thought of the unmated who long for but are unable to find a lover, or worse yet the ones who recently lost their loved ones, or who were DUMPED by someone who didn't love them back....
I feel profound compassion for those groups. Valentines' Day rubs their noses in their grief and misery.
A word of advice from an old broad who has observed the world**: if you have a good, kind, committed lover, appreciate him/her! They may not be perfect, but they're a blessing! If you don't ... don't waste your time searching for one! You're wasting precious time chasing rainbows. Develop your talents, pursue something you're passionate about, DO stuff you love. I once read that "good things happen quickly" and my observations have confirmed it. Men (and probably women too, to an extent) may dawdle along in a superficial relationship for decades, but when "the right one" comes along, suddenly the anti-marriage individuals can't wait to marry. ... Re-watch the movie "French Kiss."
In consideration of all my attitudes about this day, i offer a personally-designed cocktail for your delectation. In order to keep carbs as low as possible, i left out certain flavor-augmenting embellishments that i might otherwise have included, but i'm satisfied with the result. My husband and i sacrificed our diets testing several incarnations of the recipe, to make sure this was worth your consideration! ;-)
2 oz. kirschwasser (dry -- not a sweet liqueur but simple cherry brandy)
1 oz. heavy cream
2 drops almond extract
2 drops liquid sucralose (or 1 packet of splenda)
2 dashes chocolate bitters
1 drop red coloring (if desired)
Shake for 30 seconds with plenty of ice, then strain into a cocktail glass, and garnish with a maraschino cherry or a shaving of dark chocolate.
* i'm reminded of a friend's dilemma when i lived in TX -- his girlfriend had just lost her mother, and he wanted to make a gesture of support. He was concerned about sending the right message: enough to be impressive but not to "say too much." :-) I suggested a pendant necklace with her birthstone (in this case, a sapphire). ...He ultimately lost her through his ambivalence.
** i like to think that i'm in training to become a "Wise Woman." ;-)