An Expensive  Souvenir Called


Decoding The Link Between  Consumerism, Valentine’s Day,  And Mental Health

Experts have pointed to the commercial nature of Valentine’s Day as a critical factor.

The recent Non-Feature Film, The 14th February & Beyond, by Indian filmmaker Utpal Kalal, highlights how the commercial nature of  Valentine’s  Day is linked  to poor  mental  health, especially in  men and  those  who're single. 

Valentine’s Day and mental health 

Surveys over the years have revealed that ‘exclusive’ celebrations like Valentine’s Day have a detrimental impact on mental health. 

A type of holiday blues, experts have categorized poor mental health symptoms prevalent during Valentine’s week as “Valentine’s Day blues”.  

This mental health condition is typically characterized by anxiety and depressive symptoms, stress, and social withdrawal.  

The commercial nature of Valentine’s Day

Valentine's Day ads usually promote the notion that being in a relationship is the best thing in the world and to prove your affection through expensive presents or other expensive romantic gestures. 

The negative impact of Valentine's Day depression

Studies have claimed that the way Valentine’s Day is marketed and manipulated can be extremely damaging to mental health. For instance, research shows a strong prevalence of Valentine's Day anxiety in men.  

Valentine’s Day ads tend to portray men as stoic breadwinners and providers. These harmful gender expectations trigger emotional stress in men, especially heterosexual men. 

They also tend to experience financial stress related to shopping for presents, planning dinner dates, etc. 

For members of the LGBTQIA+ community, Valentine’s Day marketing strategies hold up exclusive heterosexual values, often triggering homophobic remarks and bullying as well as the questioning of gay rights. 

Especially for people who are not in a relationship, the blizzard of ads inextricably linking consumerism with romance during Valentine’s week can be stressful. These serve as only a reminder of their loneliness. 

What more can cause loneliness? Know in detail below!

Bettering Valentine's Day for your mental health 

During Valentine's week, certain measures can actually help you navigate through the trying times and maintain sound mental health on Valentine's Day. 

For example, people in singlehood can indulge in tiny rituals of self-love like gifting oneself a tiny present or volunteering for a good cause

Couples can probably settle on affordable but meaningful romantic gestures like writing love letters, gifting personal tokens, or planning a casual outing together

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