While Valentine’s Day is a time to celebrate and show your appreciation for your significant other, it can be a lonely time for many older adults. Many of them will celebrate this season without their spouse, some for the first time. Because of this, Valentine’s Day for older adults is often accompanied by sadness or feelings of depression and loneliness.
If you think your elderly loved one is feeling this way, use this Valentine’s Day as an opportunity to show your love and appreciation. Even something as simple as a handwritten note can touch the heart of someone who is feeling lonely and sad.
Here are a few tips for making Valentine’s Day special for your seasoned family member:
Create a festive environment
Putting up Valentine’s Day decorations is sure to bring a smile to your loved one’s face. You can take it a step further and involve them by making simple DIY decorations together. Here are some of our favorite DIY decorations.
Write a thoughtful note
There’s nothing better than a sweet, handwritten message from the heart. This can take the form of a store-bought card or simply a letter written on a piece of paper. Think of the ways your loved one is an outstanding person and what you admire about them. Tell them how much you love them, how much you appreciate them, and how happy you are that they are a part of your life.
Give them a special gift
Nothing says “I love you and appreciate you” like a thoughtful gift! Surprise your loved one with a beautiful floral arrangement from your local florist. Frame an old picture of your loved one with their spouse, or a recent picture of their children or grandchildren. To save money, have younger family members color them a picture or construct a Valentine’s craft.
Watch their favorite romantic movie
Find out your loved one’s favorite romantic movie and have a special family viewing on Valentine’s Day. If they don’t have a preference, watch a classic romantic movie such as Casablanca, Singin’ in the Rain, An Affair to Remember, or His Girl Friday. Engage with them by asking what memories they associate with the movie or who they first saw it with.
Share a meal or special treat
Treat your loved one to a special family meal out at their favorite restaurant. You can also make them a special Valentine’s Day treat to satisfy their sweet tooth, but don’t forget about any dietary restrictions. Here are some of our favorite healthy Valentine’s recipes:
- 5 Ingredient Strawberry Fudge Truffles
- Chocolate Cupcakes with Cashew Banana Frosting
- Heart-Shaped Valentine Cookie Sandwiches
Looking to improve your relationship with your senior loved one?
Valentine’s Day is a good time to reflect on the most important relationships in our lives. If you feel like you don’t have a great relationship with your loved one and are looking to make some improvements, download this helpful resource for Tips for Communicating with Your Senior Loved Ones.