Updated: Jun 29
The title may sound like a buzz-kill (literally), because it's not uncommon for people to drink on Valentines day. Before this year, Valentines day for me was usually accompanied by a bottle of wine at dinner, or maybe five shots of Bombay if I was single. (That might be a stretch, but you get my point). This year, though, I'm extremely excited to wake up on February 15 headache-free with a perfect memory of my fantastic date the night before. I can understand why someone would want to drink on Valentines day, because I used to think that way too... a chance to unwind with your partner, to feel more confident about some sexy time later, or to indulge just a little more than you'd usually allow yourself to. All fair thoughts. However, there are plenty of other ways to destress, indulge, and connect intimately with your partner that doesn't involve drinking! For those of you who have absolutely no clue what an alcohol free Valentines day looks like (I didn't a year ago), I've given a few ideas you can try out.
1. Spending Time Outdoors
Going on hikes is one of my favorite ways to connect with my partner. Being around greenery scientifically helps you destress and reground yourself. Spending an hour or two outside with no distractions allows for a great chance to unwind and have authentic conversations. If you both have to work during the day, you could plan to go on a walk around the neighborhood once you get home. Or, you could plan to go on a hike near a park or forest near you! Whatever works best for you, getting outside is a great alternative to destress on Valentines day.
2. Cook Dinner Together
A perfect way to connect with your partner is through some good-ole collaboration. You can even go ahead and make the whole experience about quality time! Brainstorm what meal you'd like to make together, go to the store and pick out the ingredients as a couple, and then begin to cook your meal! If you usually drink wine while making meals, check out wine alternatives such as a Non-Alcoholic Rose from Spain, Non-Alcoholic Champagne, or Alcohol Removed Cabernet. There are plenty of other alternatives you can find online or in stores! If you and your partner tend to go out to eat for Valentines day, there are alcohol-free options, too! One way that I trick my brain into thinking I'm drinking alcohol is ordering cranberry juice, soda water, and a lime, and asking for it in a wine glass. It may look a little different (I go for the look of sparkling rosé), but I promise it's even more delicious than the real thing!
3. Play a Card Game
One way you can connect intimately with your partner is to play a good old-fashioned card game. I'm
not necessarily referencing Uno or War, but you can play those too if you'd like. The goal of playing a card game together is to share some laughs and to spend that quality time together. To really get to know each other, my boyfriend and I play a card game called The Intimacy Deck. It's a deck of cards with different questions or prompts that you ask each other to learn more about your partner. It creates great conversation, and can even inform you about things you never knew about one another! Some other good ones are The Date Deck, We're Not Really Strangers, and the Better Couples Together Card Game.
4. Unwind with a Spa Day
What's a better way to relax and "get in the mood" than a spa day? If you don't want to spend money, feel free to create your own at home! Cheap face masks, some hydrating lotion, and relaxing music is all you need! Rather than going for the bottle to build that confidence, get in touch with your body through some couple centered self-care! You don't have to spend a fortune on your spa day... what matters is that you can find that same physical intimacy you yearn for with your partner without the booze.
5. Try a New Activity Together
A Valentines day spent without alcohol can be a great opportunity to try something new together! Whether that's taking a dance class to improve your skills for future weddings, or combining your brain power to conquer an escape room, there are plenty of new activities to try! Instead of going for a wine tasting, try doing something that challenges your brain or endurance! Even if you end up disliking the activity, it's the experience that counts! Doing something new with your partner is a great way to connect and strengthen the bond you do have!
Whatever you decide to do with your partner this Valentines day, know that you can do it without a drink in your hand. There are ways to destress, connect, and indulge without waking up the next day with a hangover. I hope that these five ideas gave you insight on what options are available to you for alcohol-free dates in the future. Just remember... you'll be able to remember your Valentines day and wake up without a hangover! If that isn't convincing enough, I don't know what is! Until next time!