Dear Danielle: Valentine’s Day dos and don’ts


Ah, Valentine’s Day — the most romantic day of the year. Or not, depending on how you look at it. Either way, Feb. 14 can be the most stressful 24 hours of anyone’s year, but never fear! These suggestions will set you up for sweet success on Valentine’s Day 2017.


Do communicate

Make sure you and your partner are on the same page as far as Feb. 14 goes by having a conversation regarding both of your thoughts and feelings about Valentine’s Day. This could be an incredibly awkward conversation to have, depending on where you are in your relationship, but it couldn’t possibly be more awkward than not knowing what to do about Valentine’s Day, or if you should even bother doing anything at all.

Do brush up

Make sure you know if your partner is interested in celebrating Valentine’s Day. Try to find out what they expect so you don’t get them flowers when they’d much rather have chocolate, or take them out to an extravagant candlelit dinner when they’d rather just spend the night in watching movies with you.

Do show you care

Even if your partner isn’t interested in celebrating Valentine’s Day traditionally (e.g. exchanging gifts or doing some kind of activity together), it’s still nice to let them know you care about them and you’re thinking of them. There are a million and one ways to say “I love you,” from completing an unpleasant task or chore for your partner to simply telling them.

Don’t stress

Be sure not to stress your partner or yourself out over trivial things by subscribing too much to society’s ideals of what couples should do on Valentine’s Day. As long as you’re doing whatever you’re happiest doing as a couple, your Valentine’s Day will be special.

Don’t forget

Remember that Valentine’s Day isn’t just about romance — be sure to let everyone in your life know that you care about them. Celebrate all the love by making a little time for your family and friends on Feb. 14 in addition to your partner.


Do feel free to flirt

So, you’re not in a relationship, but maybe there’s someone you’re definitely diggity-down for. If this is the case, then what better day than Valentine’s Day to reveal your feelings? Let the romantic vibe of Feb. 14 lend you a little confidence to let that someone you’ve got your eye on know you think they’re rad.

Don’t be a Grinch

Valentine’s Day definitely isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, and it’s perfectly acceptable if it’s not yours. Just make sure you’re letting your less-than-single or hopelessly romantic friends enjoy their tea party on Feb. 14.

Do treat yourself

Valentine’s Day is for celebrating love, including self-love! It’s perfectly OK to be your own not-so-secret admirer, so do something nice for yourself on Feb. 14. Treat yourself to your favorite dessert, allow yourself to sleep in or buy something you’ve been eyeing.

Don’t forget

Remember that Valentine’s Day isn’t just about romance — it’s about love, no matter who that love happens to be between. Spend some time with your best friend, shoot your sibling a random “I love you” text message, make breakfast for your roommate(s). Spreading the love on Feb. 14 is a surefire way to get a little love in return.

Whatever you decide to do (or don’t), be sure to make someone feel loved on Valentine’s Day, whether it’s your significant other, your friend, a member of your family or just your cute self.

“Dear Danielle” is new column where Danielle Cook gives relationship advice and answers readers’ relationship questions. Danielle is a sophomore in journalism. The views and opinions expressed in this column are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the Collegian. Please send questions and comments to

Hey there! I'm Danielle Cook. I'm currently a freshman in journalism and mass communications. I live for telling true stories, so I hope to be doing it for the rest of my life. Luckily, I also live for late nights and early mornings – as long as there's coffee and I'm in good company.