It's hard to pick a Valentine's Day gift for someone.

Hey Joan Actually,

I just started dating this person—it’s still very fresh—and I know with Valentine’s Day coming up, some women have really high expectations. What do I get her for Valentine’s Day? I don’t want to come off too strong and I don’t want her to lose interest.

-Milwaukee, WI

When the relationship is new, Valentine’s Day can force some awkwardness, but you can knock this thing out of the park with minimal effort.

If you’re interested in building a romantic relationship, you’re going to have leverage some romance. This doesn’t mean go crazy with the flowers or chocolates or an elaborate five-course dinner. What this means is that you let her know–in your own waythe following three things:

1.) that you are aware of the romantic holiday

2.) that the romantic holiday makes you think of her and, finally,

3.) that you’re interested in making her feel special

No need for dramatic overtures, just keep it simple and tailored to her. Send a text or an email that says “Happy Valentine’s Day. I’m happy we met.” Followed by a personal detail, so she knows you’re not sending a mass text or an email blast to everyone in your address book.

If you want to get her something, keep it small. A little card you pick up at drugstore will suffice, but, if you spend some time creating, cooking, recording, or writing your gift, you’ll have an opportunity to leverage thoughtfulness, which will net you extra points. You could write her a silly haiku, you could send her a playlist of your top 10 love songs, you could also make her a spaghetti and meatballs dinnerit’s up to you. Just remember: Whatever you do, make the gift feel like it’s just for her.

Still confused? Watch and learn.


Joan Actually

Dating Expert

Joan is a writer and dating expert.