I’ve been seeing a lot of bitterness around me lately, and it’s not too surprising. The single people are gearing up to have their lonely hearts rubbed in their faces; meanwhile, the couples are suffering the Hallmark-induced performance anxiety of gift-giving that dwarfs even that of Christmas.

I’m going to make a revolutionary proposal: Valentine’s Day isn’t, and doesn’t have to be, all about chocolate reminders of romance or enough roses to turn the Queen of Hearts’ garden into a barren wasteland. As a matter of fact, it’s not even all about couples. Why? Because Valentine’s Day, ideally, is a celebration of love, which everyone has a stake in whether or not we’ve discovered our other half. Remember that you are loved by your friends, your family or at the very least the truly amazing people on this planet who genuinely love the whole of humanity.

Love a little in return. Remember the good old days in elementary school when everyone got a Valentine and a cupcake? Far be it from us to reject the wisdom of third-grade teachers, who demonstrate their love for humanity nine months out of the year. Or, if you really want to go all out and give some joy to the world, make a date with Habitat for Humanity or a similar project. Nothing says love like nailing floorboards for people you’ve never even met.

But hey, if I haven’t convinced you that V-Day isn’t just for couples, then one last suggestion: Buy your parents a bouquet of flowers. No matter how bitter your love life (or lack thereof) might make you, it’s always good to remember that it’s a damned good thing there are couples in this world.

Jamie Morrow is the Daily Nexus copy editor. She has a whole lot of love to give.