Valentines Day is less than a week away! And, in spite of the commercials, pop up ads on our google searches, and store displays of flowers and candy, some of us will STILL wake up disappointed on February 15th.
Let’s rename February 15th as Free Marriage Coaching Day!
Every February 14th, countless couples go to bed mad. They wake up disappointed, confused, and unsure of how to handle the fall out of a lousy Valentine’s Day.
The next morning, coffee and chocolate in hand, we commiserate with our girlfriends, and try to contain our jealousy over the one whose husband got it right!
Valentines Day Blues are a Common Occurrence.
- Not because the flowers were a cheap bouquet from the grocery store
- Not because the steak was overcooked
- Not because of lousy sex or lingerie that remains in the drawer
February 15th is a tough, tension filled, disappointment laden day because of Unmet Expectations.
Most of my clients will openly acknowledge the root of most disappointment, tension, and arguments in marriage come from unmet expectations, they just aren’t sure what to do about changing things.
News Flash: Unmet Expectations are Our Own Fault
They really are! We have unmet expectations because our spouse has NO idea what they are. The secret to dealing unmet expectations: Tell him what you want!
It really IS that simple. And your man will thank you for it.
The perfect Valentines Day without any discussion about wants and expectations is a fairy tale.
Set your spouse up for success with these 3 Simple Tips to Save Valentines Day:
Tip #1: Repeat after me: Men are NOT mind readers.
(And they are usually not as aware of the obvious clues we leave for them to trip over.)
I know we pine for movie style love scenes, but they are not real! Last night, I watched Bridget Jones Baby, and Patrick Dempsey was the man of many girls dreams. After a tense conversation, as he swooped in with food, flowers, and a delightful monologue that began with an apology! (I am certain a woman wrote the scene.)
- That picture you tore out of the magazine and left on the counter hoping he would see it, is probably buried under piles of mail.
- The hint you dropped (loudly) at the mall last week, was not registered or written down because the Super Bowl was coming up.
- Those instructions you gave your kiddos to tell their daddy… it didn’t happen or probably got lost in translation.
I am not being pessimistic. I am being honest about the reality of life. Men are only mind readers in the movies!
Most likely, your spouse thought about getting you flowers, or tried to remember the store you pointed to, and racked his brain for your favorite candy… he probably got distracted with work, kids, life demands. He still loves and values you. He is just being a man- compartmentalized and unaware of what you are expecting on February 14th.
Remember, men are NOT mind readers, no matter how much we wish they were.
Tip # 2: Getting exactly what I tell him I want for Valentines Day is not less romantic. (Repeat daily and 3x on Valentines Day.)
Sharing your hopes and expectations for Valentines Day is a gift to your spouse!! Put him out of his misery and just tell him in detail what you want. Men love to make their women happy, so help them out by cluing them in on how to do so!
Setting him up for success is not less romantic!
It IS romantic when he remembers what you told him you wanted, liked, hoped for, and actually follows through with action. And as women, we change our minds like we change our shoes, so keeping what we want straight is a tough job sometimes.
Many of my male clients shared their relief in knowing exactly how to make their spouse feel loved and cared for, rather than trying to guess and most likely get it wrong.
Feeling Seen and Known IS Romantic
For years, the hubs brought me carnations on Valentines Day.
One winter day, as we hurried to see a friend in the hospital, we stopped by the grocery store for flowers. Given the options in the flower department, a bouquet of carnations looked the best, and I picked them up saying, “I like these.”
Thoughtfully, the hubs tucked away this piece of info: “Susie likes carnations.”
And so for years… I got carnations. Each time I forced a smile, while fighting back my disappointment.
You see, I don’t really like carnations.
Years passed before I told John, because I didn’t want to seem ungrateful, or squash his efforts, but I felt unknown and disappointed.
When I finally took my own advice and told him I wanted daisies, roses, wildflowers… anything but carnations, he was grateful. John sensed my disappointment but was confused because what woman is disappointed when she gets flowers?!
Now John knows what I want and loves watching my face light up with genuine delight because I feel known. That’s romantic!
Tip #3: Tell him what you want, hope for, and need.
If you want to get what you want, you gotta tell him what that is!
We can creatively share our desires and actually set our spouse up for success.
- If you like surprises, give him options to pick from in a variety of price points.
- Keep a list or Evernote file of your favorite flowers, sweet treat, restaurant, etc for him to choose from on special occasions or any old Tuesday.
- Email him the links to your “Oh, I love this, please buy it for me” things.
- Share your Amazon wish list.
- Post a list of your baby sitters sohe can text to surprise you with a date night.
- Set up a date night by getting a babysitter and putting it on his calendar, then ask him to make reservations at ____, or buy tickets to ____.
These are just a few ideas to help your spouse know and romance you. Feel free to add any of your helpful hints in the comments below.
Using these 3 tips will not only help save Valentines Day and other special occasions, but will keep you from being disappointed and kick unmet expectations to the curb!
Try them and tell me how it goes in the comments below 🙂