He's Ditching Me on Valentine's Day
Ask Demetria: If he's making excuses to be somewhere else, his heart may not belong to you.
It would have been better if he'd avoided making up an excuse and just told you flat out what he's likely thinking. But a lot of men would rather let a woman down easy (in their minds) and avoid being the bad guy. Or they'd rather spend Valentine's Day with the person they actually want to be with or are committed to, and spend Feb. 15 (unofficially well known as "Mistress Day") with the person they keep on the side.
It's impossible for me to know into which category your guy falls (maybe both?), but neither scenario bodes well for you. If you were seeking a relationship with this man, it's time to cut ties and seek elsewhere.
Going forward in your dating journeys, you may find other great excuses that people use to get out of spending time together on Valentine's Day (and other holidays). Don't fall for them. Beware of the partner who rants and raves about the day being a "Hallmark holiday" created by "corporate America" to suck his pockets dry.
That's not exactly untrue. But men know they are expected to show and prove their love on Feb. 14 as a cost associated with having a significant other. You are not asking too much to expect at the very least attention, romance and/or time spent together on this day, not the day or weekend after. And you should keep a skeptical eye on the man who wants to avoid that for any reason.
Of course, there are men who will have very valid excuses for not doing so. Some will genuinely have to work late or be unable to avoid a regular night shift. (Go with your gut on whether you should believe that or not.) And since we're in a recession, not everyone will be able to splurge on a bouquet of roses or an expensive dinner or gift. In your pursuit of having a romantic day, try to be reasonable in your expectations and thankful for his efforts to make you happy, even if it's not perfect.
Lastly, in all this discussion about men who don't do right on Valentine's Day, let me offer a final warning about men who do right only on this day. Valentine's Day is not a magical elixir that erases or excuses mediocre treatment most other days of the year. If your significant other pays you attention on only one day of the year, you may want to contemplate why you've remained in the relationship all the other days.
Demetria L. Lucas is a contributing editor to The Root, and the author of A Belle in Brooklyn: The Go-to Girl for Advice on Living Your Best Single Life. She answers your dating and relationship questions on The Root each week. Feel free to ask anything at firstname.lastname@example.org.