Valentine’s Day is a very serious time in Lagos and has been known to make or break relationships. It has become an all-out, no hands-tied competition to see whose bae will turn up. And I expect this year will be no different. After all, the break up memes and videos are already out, gifts are being marketed and hopefully restaurant reservations are being booked. So I expect that on the day there shall be a couple of engagements taking place and thousands of Lagosians will flood their Instagram with memories of their day.

Those of you who want to pretend that Val’s Day is just another day will have to turn off your phones, switch off your TV, stay at home and read a book to avoid the celebrations and disappointments. This, because it is a day that is taken very seriously.

But how many of us have taken a step back to look at the day and question why it is so significant? Many of us are not even aware of why the day came into being. The most popular story regarding the beginning of Valentine’s Day has to do with a man named Valentine who went against the orders of the Roman emperor of the time and married couples in secret. He was discovered and executed and the day was memorialized in honour of him and the efforts he made.

So I like to think of Valentine’s as a day for the survival of love against the odds. In fact, I think Valentine’s Day should be considered as an excellent day for a wedding or for the renewal of vows, rather than a day to throw chocolates and jewellery at the object of your affection.

The pressure on both men and women on Valetine’s Day is so emotionally draining that the day is known to cause as much pain as joy. But before you decide that your significant other does not care about you based on their Valentine’s Day actions, as yourself these questions:

How do they treat you normally: Does he or she show you love every day? Have they ever given you a gift? Are they frank and open about the way they feel about you? Valentine’s Day is not the day to begin to examine the actions of bae. Examine his/her actions every day. If you do this, you will find that Valentine’s Day is not as big an occasion to you.

What do you want for Valentine’s? Many of us don’t know what we want, but we know we want something and are disappointed when it doesn’t appear. Take the time to ask yourself, what do I want? Do I want roses? Do I want a good time? Do I want my friends to know my bae is the best? Once you have an understanding of what, you can curb any unreasonable expectations by looking at the situation that you and your bae are in. Sometimes you also have to speak up about what you want, surprises are nice but disappointments can be avoided when one speaks plainly.

What is it that you love about Valentine’s Day? Drop a comment below.


Oyinkan Braithwaite is a graduate of Creative Writing and Law from Kingston University. Following her degree, she worked as an assistant editor at Kachifo and has been freelancing as a writer and editor since. She has had short stories published in anthologies and has also self published work. In 2014, she was shortlisted as a top ten spoken word artist in the Eko Poetry Slam.



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  3. Yeah bookmaking this wasn’t a high risk decision outstanding post! .

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