JOPLIN, MO.--- Valentine's Day brings on images of hearts and red roses, but for some, it can also bring on the blues. If you are planning on spending Valentine's Day alone this year, don't let traditional expectations leave you feeling down.
"We tend to think of Valentines as a time for relationships, it's time for expressing the love that we have for one another and if there's a time when you don't have someone in your life, it can be a very lonely time," said Charlotte Trautman, PSY.D. Ozark Center, Freeman Health System.
Medical experts like Doctor Charlotte Trautman say T.V. and magazines overplay Valentine's Day.
"You have to have the perfect diamond, you have to have the perfect flowers, the perfect romantic meal and most families do not fit into a Madison Avenue kind of holiday," said Dr. Trautman.
She says try something different instead of molding to others expectations.
"Don't cling to the ones that have been done for the last 25-30-50 years, start new traditions," said Dr. Trautman.
Like volunteering, going to a movie, or even a museum. For individuals who've lost a loved one or have recently gone through a divorce, the coping process is different.
"People grieve very differently, but for all of these losses there will be some reaction, some very intense kinds of reactions," said Dr. Trautman.
However, having the blues is not as severe as a clinical mood disorder.
"If it last more than two to three weeks, it would be well to seek some professional help, it may be depression," said Dr. Trautman.
Dr. Trautman tell us even married couples shouldn't get too wrapped up in Valentine's Day. Trying to make it perfect can be overwhelming.
"Stress sets in. Stress can lead to all sorts of other types of problems. Stress can lead to physiological problems, and so don't try to do it all," said Dr. Trautman.
Medical experts suggest if you know you'll be alone this Friday, try to plan the day out and even treat yourself to something special, like a large box of chocolates.
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