pajamasutra
Photo via Kamini Ramdeen | Robes courtesy of Pajama Sutra

You saw them in the grocery store.

Their beady eyes fixated on you, tracing your every move. You roam through every aisle, trying to avoid his gaze… But they are relentless.

Eventually, you give up and make your way to the checkout line. Just as the cashier hands you your receipt, you look to your right and there they are.

Fluffy and pink, the little bear mocks you, a miniature “Be Mine” pillow sewn between his small, plush paws in a display of irony. Angered, you pick up your bags and storm out the door.

[Read Related: Love Yourself: Five Helpful Tips to Boost Your Self-Confidence]

Outside, you see people leaving the store, herding red, and pink heart-shaped balloons, and rose bouquets. As you finally seek refuge in your car, the Bluetooth audio automatically connects, and before you know it, Arijit Singh is singing about… You guessed it! Love.

If the situation described above sounds anything like you, it all indicates one thing: You aren’t looking forward to Valentine’s Day. Maybe you haven’t found that special someone yet, and maybe you have but you’re still waiting for them to realize that they’re madly in love with you. It can even be that you’re just trying to celebrate your single-ness and continuing loving yourself. You also may not have any plans for Valentine’s day.

However, fret not! We’ve been there and we’ve done that.

Here are 13 things to do on Valentine’s Day without a valentine.

1. Give in to your love for animals

Go to the nearest animal shelter/PetSmart and watch kittens and puppies do their thing. Maybe shed a tear or two when the cuteness becomes unbearable.

2. Play a little dress up

Go to the nearest desi bridal dress shop and try on a bunch of lehengas that you have no intention of buying for (at least) the next 10 years. Wave goodbye to all the rishta aunties while you’re at it!

3. Celebrate your singlehood

Plan a “Singles Only” party, and go all out, or even settle for a chill movie night in with some friends, or a sleepover!

4. Binge-watch some Hasan Minhaj

Get excited because Minhaj’s show, “Patriot Act” is finally back. Maybe binge-watch the past 10 episodes (in the absurd event that you haven’t already).

5. Show your parents some love

Call one of your parents, sing happy birthday to them, then hang up. Do it—even if it’s not their birthday… Their reaction will be gold!

6. Give back to the community

Take that ONE box (full of all the stuff you don’t want/need) that’s been sitting in the corner of your living room to Goodwill. Please.

7. Do something your ex hated

From line dancing alone in your room to listening to country music to bingeing horror movies. Did they hate traveling? Plan a solo trip!

8. Indulge a little… Okay, indulge A LOT

Spend the day preparing a cheese plate for yourself. Then, research the best wine pairings for the cheeses and try them all out. Get cozy, put on your favorite Bollywood movie, and enjoy your night in.

9. Babysit for the friend or couple that never goes out


Trust me, sharing chicken nuggets and fries with little kids and breaking it down to “Baby Shark” sounds way better than a fancy dinner that costs an arm and a leg. And, your friends will love you for it!

10. Learn a new dance form

Watch a YouTube video on how to bhangra or any other dance you’ve been wanting to learn! Know this tip for starters: Bhangra is more than just petting the dog and screwing the lightbulb.

11. Set up a romantic dinner for your parents

Even though most desi parents’ marriages feel purely professional, surely there’s ~some spark~ you can reignite because you know they love each other deeply, deep down inside.

12. Go like the “most liked picture on Instagram” of the glorious egg


Just do it.

13. Invite a friend over and have a Valentine’s Day chocolate taste test


Record it for fun and watch it next Valentine’s Day!

What do you think? What will you do this Valentine’s Day to show yourself some love?

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