Guys HATE Valentine’s Day

Category: Weekly Columns


No one could ever accuse me of being too PC (politically correct).  Just read my column on PC lies! I’m always willing to also address the inherent differences between the sexes, in honest and frank ways. Not only do I hate Valentines Day, I hate using the word, “gender” in place of “sex” when referring to men and women.  Sometimes I use “gender” just to avoid the letters I’m bound to receive from the PC police, but since I’m taking on Valentine’s Day, I might as well go for it all at once.


Men and Women ARE Different

The reality is that men and women are different.  Most married couples learn this pretty quickly.  Then, if they have children, that learning process speeds up ever so much faster.  If they are blessed with having boys and girls, they graduate to a full understanding of how much the sexes are inherently different unless, of course, they’ve attended a women’s studies graduate program.  Then, they actually might believe that if you give a little girl a toy truck she’ll enjoy it as much as a little boy would a toy doll.

But, those parents I referred to earlier know exactly what happens when you do that.  The little boy will tear off the toy dolls head, while the little girls will name the toy truck some cute name and take very good care of it.

Now, while I’m making these gross generalities and potentially irritating some readers, I’ll acknowledge that there are obviously exceptions to everything I’ve just written.  But generalities, just like clichés, become generalities because they are generally true, just as clichés become clichés because of their ubiquity.  I just love that word.

The Reason We HATE Valentine’s Day

The reason that men hate Valentine’s Day, “generally,” is very much because of the inherent differences between men and women, which is why women love Valentine’s Day so much.  There is no day that more dramatizes our differences than Valentine’s Day.  The pressure men feel is so intense that most men would rather go to war than face the wrath of choosing the wrong gift, making the wrong plans, or in any way messing up on what we know is this extra special day to our women.

The fact that we don’t get it is irrelevant.  We are smart enough to know “they” do.  The bombardment from Madison Avenue most certainly doesn’t help.  We just survived the Christmas and New Year’s holidays when the jewelers start torturing us with their commercials.  And those guys in those commercials seem to know exactly what to do!

Hallmark begins with their treacle commercials that nauseate many men.  Then, our women begin with the hints.  The problem is that our women’s hints are so subtle that they go over our heads.  Women, pay attention, please.  If you don’t hit us over the head, we won’t get the hint.  Trust me on this, I beg you!

Ugh, Choosing a Card and Buying Flowers

The fun continues for us in the card shop.  Do we get a funny one; do we get a serious one?  Do we get one of those musical cards, but what is her favorite song of the moment?  Flowers?  I don’t remember which color rose is her favorite!  Does she even like roses? Flowers just make no sense to me.  They die in a few days.  What kind of sense does that make?  Besides, the vacuum is on its last legs.  Wouldn’t that make more sense?

Okay, I’m not that lame.  I wish that would work, as it is practical.  But, it won’t.  I think she gave me a hint about something, the other day, but I’m not so sure.  It probably was jewelry as it usually is, but I can’t tell the difference between a good piece of jewelry and cubic zirconium.  Heck, for the price of a good diamond, we could get a new flat screen TV and spend hours watching Monday Night Football or even those silly romantic comedies my wife loves so much.  What’s wrong with that?

Everything, and I know it.  And, it’s those differences that make the sexes work, those differences that make it all so interesting, so much fun, and so frustrating at times.  Jewelry.  What is it good for…absolutely nothing.  Where is Edwin Starr* when I need him?

I really do hate Valentine’s Day, as do most men.  But, when I get it right, I’m  happy, because then my wife’s happy, then she makes my life pretty happy and, to quote her, “Happy wife, happy life.”

So, this coming Valentine’s Day, maybe I’ll be off the hook as we’re going to be on vacation AND I invited her parents to come with us!  Shouldn’t that be good enough?

BUT, It Makes Her Happy

Okay, which jewelry store should I go to first?  Actually, I’ve learned better than even going to a jewelry story as I learned this past Christmas, which happens to coincide with our wedding anniversary.  We went to the mall.  I brought my laptop.  My wife went shopping.  She came back and told me what I’d bought her for our anniversary and Christmas.  I was smart enough not to ask the price.  She was happy.  Happy wife, Happy life….

*Edwin Starr performed the song “War” with the lyrics, “War, huh, what is it good for…absolutely nothing…” in 1969.

  • David Weber

    valentine’s day sux

  • Janice

    Actually, not all women love Valentines Day. If the men in our lives would show they love us more often, then maybe a day set up by the card companies wouldn’t be needed. 😉 

    • Bruce Sallan

      Well said, Janice!

    • Debbie

      Amen Janice, I get no romance at all, and then whenever VDay comes around all I hear is about how much he hates it, if I mention it, and if I don’t mention it and hope that he will do something, doesn’t even have to be something monumental I end up disappointed every time.  A bunch of flowers on the way home from the dairy, absolutely 0 effort in that, might sound ungrateful but I just want a little effort sometimes, is that too much to ask?

      • Debbie

        I absolutely loath VDay now because it just ends up with me feeling like he can’t be arsed making me happy.

      • Bruce Sallan

        I may joke about VD, but it IS the man’s JOB to romance his woman! Yes, it can be frustrating when we are expected to read your minds, but we can ask! My wife wanted a particular ski parka. She told me, we bought it, she’s happy. We will go out on the day AFTER Valentine’s Day to a romantic restaurant of HER choosing (she’s VERY picky about restaurants as she’s a great cook and foodie) and I might even order us a couple glasses of wine! lol…

  • Musthavebeenamagpie

    Luckily both my husband and I hate Valentine’s day and refuse to celebrate it.  I even hated it in grade school but joined in because A) it was mandatory and B) I got candy.   I think it makes so much more sense to show someone you love them randomly throughout the year without needing some Fortune 500 company’s propaganda pressuring you.  To me this seems MUCH more sincere than what (to me) essentially amounts to “Here honey, I got you something now leave me alone about it until the next big holiday/birthday/anniversary.”

    • Bruce Sallan

      Your husband is a lucky guy!

    • Lamusa08

      That is very sad! Love gets to be celebrated every day of the year!

  • Russell


  • squirleywrath

    test from twitter

    • Bruce Sallan

      I think your tests worked, Russ!?

  • squirleywrath

    test from

  • Russ

    test from disqus

  • Jonpierrevalencia


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  • ginavalley

    Nice job on the “ubiquity” usage.  I love that word, too.
    I love to get flowers BECAUSE they die.  I can enjoy them, then throw them out and not have something else I need to take care of.I hate getting candy as a gift.  I like candy. But, I try not to eat it, so I don’t want any to be given to me, especially by my romantic partner!  It’s like saying, “Here.  Now you have to spend extra time at the gym.”
    Jewelry is great, but it has to be something I would wear, so requires a pre-tour of my jewelry box. And, a receipt.  Just in case.
    My favorite gifts are things that can’t be bought.  A handwritten letter.  Something he made.  Stuff like that.

    • Bruce Sallan

      Very interesting and VERY female take on flowers @GinaValley:twitter 

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  • animalcracker

    Come on guys….yes, even gals sneaking on here to see what we guys are talking about.   Valentine’s Day is really a day to remember one another in this hectic, busy-busy world.   And I don’t care if the greeting card and jewerly companes are behind it all.     For me, I try to spend extra time and make the day extra special in every way.  I try to express my appreciation for all the great qualities I find in my sweetheart.  She gets chocolates all the time.   She doesn’t really need or want any new jewelry.  Fortunately, she likes potted plants more than cut flowers.   And the card, well, most of the time I try to make one from scratch so it’s like being in kindergarten again so I have as much fun now as I did then.    On Valentine’s Day….well, I just try thinking like a love-struck, first love kindof kid who has a crush on the cute girl on the school bus.   I act accordingly.   May seem goofy to some, but she loves it and isn’t it true that in life, time and simple acts often do more than expensive gifts.   Let’s get real and keep it simple but sweet. 

    • Bruce Sallan

      Naturally, I’m being a bit of a wise-a** with this column, but at least in my case, my wife does have a LOT of expectations around every “gift opportunity!”

  • Magda Wtr

    man, this is so stupid. I am a gal and I absofreakinglutely hate valentine’s day. And i remember how awkward i felt whe my ex-boyfried SURPRISED me on that stupid day, ages ago, taking for a walk and to a restaurant and getting me a bunch of flowers… (which i also hate) – to him it was special, sweet, loving, caring, but i only thought how i should pretend that i was ok with all that. it took me months to prepare him for the next valentines day (to explain that i do NOT celebrate it). Regardless, he still got me a present on that day. Now, cough cough. 

    • Bruce Sallan

      YOU are funny @google-2365ce51b76e3d0c2c421b026a2f3007:disqus 

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  • laurirottmayer

    I’m not a big fan of Valentine’s Day for me although I love gifting my friends and kids. I can give a big hint that I’m sure will help many men avoid making a mistake. No hoodie footie, no Sherri’s Berries, and no rose dipped in 24k gold. I mean seriously. Could you imagine a collection of those? Gah! For me, a bar of deep chocolate and a six pack of Heineken would be fine and just getting to spend time with my husband who travels a lot is the best. 🙂

    • Bruce Sallan

      Thx for weighing in @laurirottmayer:disqus – ahhh, a girl who likes beer! Where were you when…

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