Northampton Press

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Respectfully Yours: Valentine gift

Friday, January 26, 2018 by JACQUELYN YOUST Special to The Press in Focus

Dear Jacquelyn,

How do you determine what type of Valentine’s Day gift to buy for your significant other? Does the gift depend on the length of the relationship? I’d appreciate your thoughts for some Valentine’s Day gift ideas. I struggle each year to get the sentiment right.

Dear Reader,

Valentine’s Day means different things to different people.

What you plan depends on how long you’ve been together and how serious the relationship is.

Valentine’s Day can be confusing when you aren’t sure what the rules are. There are lots of questions that relate to Valentine’s Day, but there are a few general pointers for different relationship stages.

The price of the gift will depend on how well you know each other and how long you’ve been together. Keep in mind that the most important aspect of gift-giving is that it comes from your heart.

For a new relationship, you need to strike a balance between making a good impression and sending them running in the other direction. If you’ve only gone out on a handful of dates, don’t go crazy. An over-the-top gift can either work for you or against you. You want to give something meaningful but if you’re still in the “getting to know you” phase, you definitely don’t want to go overboard. Go for something like a book, CD, or a gift certificate to a spa.

Long-term relationships require more thought. Use this opportunity to rekindle the romance. Don’t wing it, and be sure to have some sort of plan.

Be creative. Try creating a restaurant meal at home with candles and champagne. Write a love letter from the heart. It might be cheesy, sure, but pulling out all the stops will impress her with your thoughtfulness. Use this romantic holiday to reconnect if you have become a little lazy in the romance department.

For those who have been married a long time, it’s unlikely that a romantic Valentine’s Day is something that you have on your agenda. However, it’s worth investing time and putting some thought into it. Resorting to gas-station carnations is not the best plan.

If you’re lucky enough, make time to be alone and invest in a change of environment. Plan a trip away to somewhere you used to go when you were first together. If a trip away is not possible, reserve an intimate table at your favorite restaurant and enjoy each other’s company.

Getting out of your normal routine will help bring back the spark. Show him or her just how much you care about your significant other and your relationship. The more romantic you can be, the better. And, whether you’re spending this holiday with a spouse, friend, or significant other, remember to be a courteous date.

Respectfully Yours, Jacquelyn

Have a question? Email: Jacquelyn Youst is owner of Jacquelyn Youst Etiquette Consulting, specializing in protocol training. She works with the National Civility Foundation. All Rights Reserved © 2018 Jacquelyn Youst