Valentine’s Day: A Make-or-break Date For Your Relationship?

Whether you love it or love to loathe it, that time of year is rapidly approaching when lovers the world over celebrate Valentine’s Day. Although it’s sometimes dubbed Hallmark Day and Singles Awareness Day by the less romantically inclined, Valentine’s Day is serious business for some: it can be a make-or-break time for your relationship.

Data from legal website Awo.com shows that the number of people filing for divorce rises by 40% at this time of year; clearly for some couples a disappointing Valentine’s Day can come as the last straw in a failing relationship. So it’s worth giving some thought to the kinds of gifts we exchange. Are lavish gifts really important? And if you only get something small or nothing at all, could that spell the end of an affair?

In the US in 2012, lovers spent $13.19 billion on Valentine’s cards, presents and romantic dinners for two. That’s an average of $116.21 per person, which translates to around £72 each – a fairly hefty sum when you consider you might have to buy birthday, Christmas and even anniversary presents as well. In these times of economic crisis, when unemployment is high and many people are struggling just to support themselves and their families, is it realistic to expect everybody to shell out this kind of money?

Not everybody feels obliged to splash out on Valentine’s gifts. In fact, most people seem to stick to the basics, choosing to spend their money on either cards or chocolates for loved ones, neither of which have to break the bank. Interestingly, 40% of all cards bought in the US for Valentine’s last year were bought by parents – though whether they were bought for their kids is unknown.

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However, there is a very special group which is receiving more attention than ever on Valentine’s Day: our pets. According to a survey of 6,000 US pet owners last year, 62% would spend at least $10 on Valentine’s gifts for their furry friends. As even the cleverest dog or cat isn’t capable of reading a calendar – that is to say, Valentine’s is just another day in the animal kingdom – what does this say about the value we put on gift-giving in our society?

While most reasonable people would agree that presents are not the be-all and end-all of a relationship, most of us would be a little bit hurt to receive nothing at all from our partner on Valentine’s Day. So while it isn’t necessary to remortgage the house and sell the kids in order to treat that special person in your life to an amazing Valentine’s gift, be aware that the thought does count. Failing to think about your partner on Valentine’s Day may be interpreted as a failure to think about your partner in general

This is a guest post by Elly, who has a passion for writing about Fashion, Beauty & Lifestyle across the world. She also tweets regularly on the latest updates in the fashion and retail industry, which can be found here (@Russell_Elly).

Photo source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/sashawolff/3285742242/

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