The day of the year covered in hearts: heart-shaped candy boxes, balloons and that one heart chalk candy with loving commitments smudged and unreadable. Valentine’s Day is the day those in a romantic relationship show their partner just how much they mean to them.
Whether a person is single, spending the day with friends or cooped up in a blanket wondering if the wrong gift is wrapped, students shared their opinions on the love-bound holiday.
With Feb. 14 approaching, Mikayla Stepper, a freshman secondary education and English double major, said she plans to spend the day with her boyfriend.
“He might come over, and depending on if the girls are okay with it, we might just hang out and order food,” Stepper said. “On the weekend, he is taking me out on a date, but he won’t tell me where.”
Stepper and her boyfriend have been dating for one year and three months. While she acknowledges the capitalist side of the love-filled day, Stepper said she is making him a five-sense gift made up of his favorite things.
“I see why people think it is a cash grab,” Stepper said. “I think it is a good way to have a special day for you and your significant other, but I feel like the way people emphasize Valentine’s Day is kind of extreme. I think you should be able to show your love to your significant other no matter what day it is.”
Stepper said she is an advocate for mental health and understands that holidays can be a sensitive time.
“I know February, especially Valentine’s Day, is a really rough day for some people who are single or have lost their significant other,” she said. “No matter what time of year it is or no matter what day [it is] you should always be spreading love to everyone.”
For some like Oren Mouton, a freshman finance major, the holiday couldn’t pass by faster. This year, Mouton said he is spending the holiday going out with his friends for one of their birthdays.
“To all the couples out there, good for them,” Mouton said. “I’m hating. If I can’t be happy, I don’t want no one to be happy–bottom line.”
Mouton said he has yet to have a girlfriend on Valentine’s Day, with his longest relationship being 10 and a half months. He said his ideal date is doing something active, such as archery and bowling and then having dinner afterward.
“I just feel like people are looking for hookups and that is not really me,” he said. “I am selective about dating.”
On the other hand, Arianna Valte, a freshman biology and philosophy major, said she and her boyfriend plan on having a chill day inside watching movies and maybe heading to the South Orange Village for some burgers.
“I do believe it is a made-up holiday to make money for florists and chocolate companies, but I don’t hate that it is an extra day where you can show appreciation to the person you love,” Valte said.
Valte said she is also spending the day with her sorority sisters for Galentine’s Day, a version of the holiday where friends get together to share their love for one another.
“I don’t think you necessarily need a significant other to have a good Valentine’s Day,” she said. “You don’t just love your significant other. I love my friends and the people I surround myself with, it is a perfect opportunity to show your love for those people as well.”
Valte said she met her boyfriend through a class at Seton Hall and they began spending time together by studying, going to the gym and social events.
“Valentine’s Day is not about gifts or how much money you spend on people,” she said. “It is a day to show your love to somebody.”
Calla Patino can be reached at email@example.com