My mum came to stay this weekend and dropped some none too subtle hints to my husband that it's Valentines Day on Tuesday and therefore he should spoil me, whilst announcing that she and her husband are "not doing" Valentines Day anymore. It's overhyped, over-commercialised, and an excuse for the shops and restaurants to charge over the odds for sub-standard rubbish. But I know she'll be just a little bit disappointed if she doesn't get a bunch of flowers.
Perhaps it's one of those male-female communication issues where she says "of course you don't have to get me anything" and he takes her at her word, failing to read the subtext of "but I really want you to"? And she then interprets the absence of card/gift/romantic dinner as lack of effort/care/attention etc. Unless there are other serious underlying issues I doubt there are many marriages that couldn't survive something so trivial, but sometimes it can be a symptom of other problems or the straw that breaks the camel's back, particularly if suspicion comes into play. Because of course the other side of Valentines Day is how many people are you sending cards to/receiving them from, and how many affairs get found out around this time? I recall more than one unreasonable behaviour petition where Valentine's Day was mentioned. So if the January rush is over, perhaps a few more new clients will be coming through the doors in the next week or so.
Perhaps being in the business of family law you become over-cynical about these things. But I would hazard a guess that there are not many women (even divorce lawyers) who don't appreciate a few flowers every now and then. A little romance can go a long way. And if you celebrate Valentines Day a day late, the money goes twice as far as well!
Hayley Trim is a Family Law PSL at Jordan Publishing and was formerly a family solicitor practising in London.
She works on the Family Law online major works providing updating notes on cases and other relevant developments as they happen for The Family Court Practice, Children Law and Practice and Matrimonial Property and Finance online.
Contact Hayley on Twitter: @HayleyTrim