Content Warning: alcohol mention

Time for another issue of Holiday Hate, which is what I'm calling the fact that I seem to write articles about what to do with whatever holiday it is this week that you can't or won't celebrate in the usual way.

Being unintentionally single on Valentines Day is horrible because even if you think Valentines Day is stupid everyone and everything goes out of their way to rub your face in it (and yes, saying aw poor thing and trying to set them up with your neighbor's cousin's nephew definitely counts - you know who you are!). Its also a day where, if you're happy being single, people try extra hard to make you feel weird or guilty about it. Now, while there's always the traditional option of hermiting inside until it all goes away, if you don't have to work on Saturday's that seems like a terrible waste of a weekend to me and will double the irritating sympathy you get from coworkers when you have to admit to it on Monday.

Going out not-on-a-date is actually a surprisingly viable option. A lot of places have deals for odd numbers of people on the 14th, so if you can get together with other single friends or even couples who think Valentine's Day is pointless you can get a really nice meal and cocktails on the cheap. This is also great because of how often it seems to confuse random people that you're not either part of a couple or alone and sad.

Valentine's Day is also a really good excuse to have a party. I can hear half of you thinking that I'm really phoning this in right now but think about it; people are looking for cheap dates to go on and a party someone else is hosting is one of the cheapest. Its also an excuse to do ridiculous kitschy things with themed cocktails and sweets (candy for American readers). If your friends are anything like mine they're a. broke and b. planning on winging it on Saturday so a party where all they have to do is bring a bottle is going to be even more appealing than on a normal weekend. The party is probably not an option if you want to pretend that it is a normal weekend as drunk people are notoriously bad at remembering not to talk about the thing no ones supposed to talk about, but if you want to try and host a party where the V word is banned good luck to you. I suggest mean spirited forfeits so at least you'll have punitive photographs to show them when they sober up.

If a party sounds unappealing you can always have people over for dinner, movies or pot luck. This is nice because while you can Valentines theme the food if you want (and if you do, bi theme it too and send us pictures) you can also just ban mention of it and are actually likely to succeed at pretending its a normal day. See if there are any nightlines still taking volunteers for the night. There's a good chance they'll be understaffed, you'll feel good about yourself and it'll make you seem like a saint during the Monday morning interrogation (I should say now that my coworkers are actually lovely and I'm drawing entirely on tropes here). There's probably other volunteer drop in work you can be doing as well if you google it if you want to do something more hands on.

If you actually want to spend the night alone then as always your friends are netflix, tumblr and ignoring the hell out of Facebook. You might also want to check out our list of suggestions for spending New Year alone because a lot of its transferable.

This all also works if you're not actually single but for whatever reason - work, distance - you can't be with your partner on the night. I suggest leaving them something nice on the pillow for when they get home if its the former and going off to skype at some point if its the latter.

Whatever you end up doing, take care of yourselves and do what makes you happy, not what everyone else thinks you should be doing.