Valentine’s Day Isn’t For Real Men or Is It?
This year I am boycotting Valentine’s Day, and here is why….
I remember my first ever Valentine’s Day with my first girlfriend. I went all out; I bought pretty much everything from a shop that I knew would put a smile on her face.
And when I had finished, I felt I hadn’t bought enough, so I went around the shop again to add more to my basket.
She loved the Jane Austin era, and the shop was full of historical gifts that could make even Elon Musk overdrawn.
And ever since, I’ve participated in Valentine’s day, buying gifts, experiences and holidays. What a good boy; pat on the back for Faisal.
This year for the first time, I stopped and questioned, why?
They say only a fool works on autopilot and doesn’t question their reasoning, actions and motives, or at least not go into inquiry.
After much thought and searching, I realised that the nice-guy syndrome is perpetuated by the belief “I’m not good enough.”
His approval-seeking, and approval-avoiding behaviours drive his inauthentic actions.
So, was Valentine’s Day an action to win her approval and be seen as a good man or is there something deep within?
You see, nice-guys work on a hidden expectation; he ‘gives to get.’
He believes if I do something, I expect they will do the same for me without asking or communicating my needs.
Dr. Robert Glover, a nice-guy syndrome specialist and author of “No More Mr Nice Guy” book, calls these covert contracts.
He says that nice-guys believe that when I meet their needs, they will fulfil my needs, and this is all done without agreement or speaking out.
And valentine’s day was one big covert contact for some, if not many, men.
If I shower her with gifts and cards, I will get her approval; she will think I’m a great guy and not like the other jerks. And I will get sex.
And I made a grandiose gesture, a common theme amongst nice-guys; it will be so impressive that she’ll brag about me to her friends and family so much they will have a statue of me in their garden.
Digging deep, I asked my men’s group, “why do you do it?”
At first, they shared a lot of superficial answers. After much thought, most of the guys didn’t give a fuck about the day and only did because they didn’t want to experience rejection or upset.
They were more worried about not wanting to be disapproved, so they made a half-hearted effort out of obligation, guilt and shame. I don’t want to experience her angry mum’s disapproval look.
As much as buying her stuff for Valentine’s day to experience the highs, on the other coin, I am doing this to avoid being seen as a man who doesn’t care or not a nice man..
When all the girls say what a nice, sweet romantic guy he is for buying his woman flowers, cards etc… So what’s the opposite? A man who doesn’t subscribe to the commercial day which has only been around for under 1600 years, is he an uncaring jerk?
But no, how about a neutral stance? No, that doesn’t exist. He is fantastic or a jerk, but there is no middle ground.
I did a social media post, and the women quickly shamed guys who didn’t take part, calling them tight, inconsiderate and unloving. And worst, not a man.
When I dug deeper into what was driving my actions, it wasn’t authenticity; it was deep route fear and co-dependency.
The truth is, like most of the guys who’ve expressed, they felt obligated to participate; how romantic.
My reality was that I was only doing it out of obligation, pressure and condition. But did I have full agency? No. Do I really want to buy overpriced items? No.
And speaking of gifts, I believe the best gift you can give is that it comes from deep within and you thought about it, and you wanted to.
If you are attached to what people think, your actions are driven by your people-pleasing behaviour, not your core.
And when is unable to function from his core, he suffers from pain and disconnection and walks the planet aimlessly.
In terms of sexual attraction, there is only one rule, the same rule for dancing. The masculine leads and the feminine follows.
And based on this erotic principle, you have to question who is leading Valentine’s day. Is it you, the masculine man, women or social conditioning?
If you feel pressured to seek approval and avoid disapproval, guilt or shame, you were never leading and maybe never had full agency over your life.
Remember love and romance aren’t reserved for special days. You do it because you want to from your heart…