The Best Gift for Valentine’s Day

Selecting a Valentine’s Day card for your honey can be a tricky business, especially if anger and resentment have infiltrated your relationship.  A sweet, sentimental card will seem disingenuous and a humorous card will likely offend. What to do?  Chocolate may come to the rescue – but maybe, just maybe, you can give a more valuable gift.

Valentine’s Day is a time when many feel a pang of disappointment. It reminds us of the fairy tale of everlasting passion and unchanging love. This is a myth that will never live up to the hype.  Movies, TV, and Harlequin novels promote the idealized romantic myth while making us feel like our relationship will never be good enough and robs us of happiness. The myth needs to be filed along with unicorns, Atlantis, and the Tooth Fairy.

In the real world, if you’ve been together for any length of time, like most people you’ve had your ups and downs, drag down fights, felt disconnected, and occasionally heart-broken. You have compromised, apologized, forgiven, and let go of anger and disappointment.

Creating a successful relationship is one of life’s most significant challenges. Valentine’s Day is an opportunity to take the time to recognize and appreciate the love that you share. It’s a day to remember that we’re all flawed – and more than anything else – desperately want to be accepted by our partner.  The gift of acceptance is far sweeter than chocolate.



Jerry is a patient, warm-hearted therapist dedicated to guiding couples to breakthroughs. He has counseled individuals and couples for over 40 years, in a variety of settings. He received his Ph.D. in Psychology at Saybrook Institute in San Francisco and a Master’s Degree in Counseling Psychology at Antioch New England University. Jerry co-authored Relationship Transformation: How to Have Your Cake and Eat It Too with Mary Ellen Goggin — and they were married by chapter 3. Jerry brings a great depth and breadth of expertise to his work, and distills nuanced theories into actionable simplicity. He loves The New Yorker, dew-laden fairways, and dusty delta blues. His revolution: changing the world, one couple at a time. Read more about the retreats