Roses. Candles. Soft lighting. A sexy playlist. A long hot soak (for you… or two.) Here at Soak Sunday, we love a little (aka a lot…) of romance, but when it comes to the most romantic day of the year, along with it comes a lot of pressure, for those of us who are in a relationship and for those that aren’t.
In the lead up to Valentine’s, the team at Soak Sunday have been thinking a lot more about love and the many forms it comes in, from self-love to the love of your life, the purely platonic to a newly found partner, each relationship is valid and valuable.
As the big day looms, we want to think about Valentine’s from a different perspective, so decided to speak to Paisley Gilmour, Sex and Relationships Expert & Writer, to hear about why she thinks Valentine’s Day shouldn’t just be all about romantic relationships…
‘For most of us, Valentine’s Day first enters our consciousness when we’re children. Whether it’s via our parents (did anyone else’s mum leave heart-shaped chocolates under their pillow with a letter from Saint Valentine?) or at school, February 14th has always been positioned as The Most Romantic Day for lovers.
Romantic relationships, especially those that are monogamous and heterosexual, have always been prioritised. We’ve got the endless rom coms and love songs to partly thank for that. And while yes, romantic relationships are important and deserve attention, they’re not the be all and end all. In fact, the relationships we have with ourselves, our families and our friends can be the most transformative and life-changing. There’s no reason we can’t turn the antiquated, and frankly a bit dark, traditions of Valentine’s Day on their head, and make it about the love that really matters to us.
So if you’re single, or even in a relationship and not a fan of Valentine’s Day, you can still celebrate in a way that feels right for you. Instead of feeling pressured into squeezing ourselves into lingerie we’ll never wear again, or cooking a Michelin-worthy four courser for a partner, we can think about the platonic connections that are most important to us and give them space. We can use the day to reflect on our friendships, tell our pals how much we love them, or check in with our families. We should actively give our platonic relationships the same amount of emotional energy as we would romantic ones.
According to professor of psychology Eli J. Finkel, one of the most common reasons that modern relationships fail is because we expect too much from our partners. We want them to be our best friend, hottest lover, emotional support system and career coach. Recognising we can get some of those things from other, platonic relationships, means we can give non-sexual connections the applause they deserve. And in turn, we can realise that those relationships are worth celebrating, too.’ - Paisley Gilmour, Sex and Relationships Expert & Writer
This February 14th, we’ll be celebrating love, in all forms. Whether that will be our romantic other halves to the best friends and support systems we could have ever asked for (or the love we have for ourselves), there’s space for it all.
In the news and your bedroom…
talking about sex, love and pleasure shouldn’t be a taboo.
Her. Him. You. Them. All.