The Daily Illini

Students to celebrate independence on Singles Awareness Day

By Mara Shapiro

This Friday, campus will be filled with happy couples holding hands, wearing red and pink and kissing under the eternal flame. What students may not realize is that there is another holiday around this time: Singles Awareness Day. 

According to singlesawareness.com, the holiday’s exact date of celebration can be disputed. Some prefer Feb. 14, the same day as Valentine’s Day, but others prefer Feb. 13 or Feb. 15, to get away from the “commercialism of Valentine’s Day.” The origin of this holiday comes from single people who “were tired of feeling left out” on Valentine’s Day, according to the site. 

Traditions for the holiday include sending oneself flowers, giving gifts to oneself or other singles and having singles get-together events. But despite its misleading acronym abbreviation, this holiday does not have to be depressing or unromantic.

Giselle Martinez, senior in LAS, said she embraces her singleness for Valentine’s Day.

“(Having a relationship) is a huge commitment and responsibility,” she said. “School is my main focus. It’s easier to focus on school and work without being in a relationship.” 

Martinez also said she thinks students should make sure that they are ready to be committed to another person before they decide to get into a relationship.

“If you’re not ready for responsibility, then you are not ready for a relationship. It’s give and take, and it’s not fair to the other person if you can’t do that,” Martinez said.

Tayo Adeoye, freshman in LAS, said he enjoys the freedom of being single but does eventually want to get into a relationship of his own.

“Ideally, I want to be with someone one day. But (I’m a) freshman, and I don’t want a relationship in the first year,” he said. “People want to do crazy stuff and be wild, but I want an actual genuine relationship one day.”

Adeoye said that he enjoys the independence of being single, something he will be able to celebrate on Singles Awareness Day.

“I have more time to myself. I don’t have to plan my schedule around another’s — although one day I’d be OK with doing that. I don’t have to depend on another person (right now),” Adeoye said.

Knut Tjensvoll, freshman in Engineering, is not single; however, his girlfriend of four months will be in Norway, her home country, during Valentine’s Day.  

“It’s sad because I would love to have her here, but it would be stressful to make the Valentine’s Day perfect,” Tjensvoll said. “I will be a little jealous of people walking around with their boyfriends or girlfriends though.”

Tjensvoll sent one of his girlfriend’s friends a letter he wrote. The friend plans to deliver his letter and roses to his girlfriend at work to make up for the fact that they cannot be together. As for Tjensvoll’s Valentine’s Day plans, he will be at a sushi restaurant dinner with a group of single friends.

Martinez explained that it can be hard to find someone who is ready for a long-term relationship in college. 

“It’s difficult in college to find someone as responsible as you are. Everyone’s looking for fun. Relationships are fun, but they also need to be serious. You need to be careful who you share yourself with,” Martinez said.

Martinez feels that Valentine’s Day can bring people who are not in relationships down, unnecessarily so.

“Commercial holidays can bring some people down. People want somebody else to appreciate them, always have their back and have that constant presence of love. Too many people are finding it in the wrong places or people,” Martinez said.

Mara can be reached at [email protected]

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