The 8 Worst Valentine’s Day Ideas Ever

Gifts are great. Not these. Sorry, dudes and dudettes.

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Valentine's Day Voucher

Love it or hate it, Valentine’s Day is a thing and whether you have a partner, a best friend, a colleague you’re close with, or even a family member who’s still about celebrating, someone is going to get you something. Or you’re going to get something for someone else.

And we should always be grateful when someone thinks of us. That doesn’t mean we’re not allowed a private groan and/or eye roll.

Here’s our take on the 8 worst Valentine’s gifts. Totally not from real experiences (except some are totally real experiences).

1. Teddy Bear
Bruh. Or girl. No. There’s something incredibly creepy about giving stuffed animals of any persuasion to a grown-up loved one. I am not 6. You are not my guardian. Choose literally any other expression of romantic sentiment please. This isn’t patronizing at all. Cheers, mate.

2. Roses
A rose by any other name is a goddamn cliché. The best gifts are ones that are specific to your partner. If you want to do flowers, find out what kind your partner actually likes. Also they’re incredibly overpriced most of the time and I really don’t understand why they’re a symbol of love. They die in like two weeks. “Always?”

3. Chocolate
Again with the tropes. Also, personal pet peeve here as I live in Australia and it’s summertime. Chocolates quickly become syrup. And that’s a weird gift. Now, you bring me a box of the saltiest gosh darn chips you can find? Sold. Just get creative if you’re going to do food. Find their favorite.

4. A Poem
On the one hand, holy crap, you wrote me a poem. On the other hand, if this isn’t super well planned out and very clearly a poem about how the poet feels about the person, this becomes weird. Poems/songs/paintings aim to capture the essence of a person. So you’re basically handing your partner your interpretation of who they are. And if you’re not super careful, you could well wind up putting your foot in your mouth.

5. Lingerie (Particularly Edible Lingerie)
Nothing says, “Hey, look! I bought you a gift for me!” like lingerie. It’s kind of a lose-lose situation. Even if you’re buying something that you’re certain your partner will look and feel great in, there’s still something just off about a gift that so obviously is for you, too. And people are picky about lingerie. If you get something they’re not into, they’re going to feel obligated to wear it anyway. Squicky choice, all the way around.

6. Vouchers for Sex
This is gosh darn lazy, tacky, presumptuous, thoughtless, and also, WHY DO YOU NEED A VOUCHER? You/Your partner are not a good or service. Sex between partners (who are celebrating Valentine’s Day) shouldn’t be a flippin’ transaction. At the best, this is something you’re already doing. At the worst, you’re making it seem like you’re taking one for the team by providing a coupon. No. Nope. The Nopest, as it were.

7. Pets
Please do not get your partner a living, breathing responsibility for Valentine’s Day. You’re giving them an adorable, big-eyed, name-able companion. You’re also giving them veterinary bills, bathroom duty, food bills, and pet-sitting arrangements to be made. Get one together after you talk about it. Don’t dump a pet on your partner for Valentine’s Day. Come on. Get your s*** together.

8. Grand Gestures in Public Places
This includes, but is not limited to, flash mobs, airplane proposals, mascot uniforms, sports’ arena proposals, video montages declaring your undying love that include all of your partner’s friends and family, and/or more than one, small, tasteful gift delivered to the office. Now. If you’re planning to propose and HAVE TALKED ABOUT IT WITH YOUR PARTNER, you get a pass on this one. But if you’re just caught up in the moment, stop. This is about you. Not your partner. Save your partner and yourself the public miscommunication and embarrassment, and make private declarations. Not public ones.

via GIPHY

Again, take these with a grain of salt. But play smart and play safe this Valentine’s Day, folks. May your weekend be filled with love and your pockets lined with thoughtful gifts.

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Sam Ferrante is a poet, editor, facilitator, and writer born on Long Island, college-fed in Western New York and Paris, and then poetically raised in Buffalo, NY; Ireland; and Australia. A former member of the Pure Ink Poetry team in Buffalo and a regular competitor in Dublin's Slam Sunday, Sam was a Co-Creative Producer at Melbourne-based Slamalamadingdong in addition to serving on the Melbourne Spoken Word Committee. Sam has been published in Ghost City Press, Blowing Raspberries, and The Dirty Thirty Anthology and has been featured at The Owl & Cat Session, La Mama Poetica, Girls on Key, and White Night 2016 among others. Her debut book of poetry, Pick Me Up, got rave reviews from her Mom. She is currently the Editor of CrowdInk.