Navigating Valentine's Day With Your Family

Whether your teenage daughter is hanging out with her friends for a "Galentine's Day" celebration or your son's friend is hosting an "Anti-Valentine's Day" party, and whether they are single, dating or simply don't care - chances are, they have an opinion about Valentine's Day.

While you don’t have to make Valentine’s Day an extravagant family holiday filled with commercialism and stress, it's important to recognize that Valentine's Day is affecting your teen on some level. Whether or not parents use it as a “teaching moment,” the holiday is a chance for us to help teens remember that they are incredibly loved, simply by jumping into their world and caring about the things that matter to them. 

Consider discussing these things with your teen leading up to Valentine's Day:

  • If they are dating: Do you feel Valentine’s Day puts a lot of pressure on your relationship? How so? Do you know how your boyfriend/girlfriend feels about Valentine’s Day? Are there any expectations that you think you should be aware of? How can you show your boyfriend/girlfriend that you appreciate him/her while honoring your boundaries?
  • If they are single: Do you have any friends you know will feel sad because they’re not in a relationship on Valentine’s Day? If so, how can you make them feel special, loved and valued? Are there any activities we can plan to make Valentine's Day a fun day with your friends?

Finally, ask each member of your family if they have noticed someone recently who could really use love and encouragement. Make Valentine's cards to deliver to those in your local nursing home, plan a scavenger hunt for your children and their friends or host a neighborhood potluck. Brainstorm how you can love and support others as a family this Valentine's Day!