Valentine's gift ideas for when you're over 30 and your back hurts

Tuesday 30th January, 2024

Ok, you don't have to have back pain to enjoy this article, although it will help.

The big problem with Valentine's Day is when you have the disposable income and the emotional maturity to really enjoy the company of your significant other, you're in your 30's, going bald and with less of a spare tire and more of a small branch of Halfords.

However, despite what romantic comedies may imply, love is still available for the less photogenic among us. However, it does need to be scheduled in Cozi to make sure it doesn't clash with little Timmy's football practice or Jemimah's ballet.

The ultimate gift, is of course the city break. The Holy Grail of couple time. The kids stay at the Grandparents (or perhaps just left alone with the Netflix password and the number for Dominos), leaving you and your better half to bumble through Paris or Rome doing touristy things and eating fancy food in little cafes. Bliss.

Even with living in the golden age of affordable air travel, going abroad can still be pricy. Even if you decide to subsidize your couple's weekend by making the main family holiday a day trip to the Pencil Museum (we're bringing our own sandwiches to save cash!). Consider then, a city break in the UK.

Yes, yes. I can hear you raising your eyebrow from here. February, here? Yes, you will need to pack a couple of jumpers. But, pick a city neither of you has been to, find a few little local museums, get a good paperback for the train- voila, lovely City Break. Ok, Norwich isn't exactly Paris. But it is charming.

If you are both in your 30's, you hopefully have a decent selection of nice memories together. A photo book is a great little gift, especially if you can go with a theme or link it to a special time together. The only problem with this present is that you are committing yourself to wading through an awful lot of Facebook posts, and phone scrolling to try and find photos at a proper resolution.

Practical gifts are very much a high-risk, high-reward option. If you've got that kind of relationship where you are entirely open and honest with each other, and your partner has said "Gee honey, we really need to sort out the grouting in the guest bathroom!" then they may be utterly delighted by a tube of that squirty white stuff that you smooth down with a lolly stick.

But just as a word of caution, no woman ever in the history of humanity has been anything less than absolutely furious with the Valentine's Day gift of an ironing board. There are cave paintings in France that show a female figure next to a flat rock going absolutely apocalyptic next to a cowering male who appears to be saying "But you said you needed a new one!"

Always get a card. Even if they say 'no cards', get a card. Here's the thing, I like cards. I like that they are sentimental. I like that they are a bit soppy. Because if you can't be soppy in a Valentine's card, where can you be? They're like a miniature train set, only existing to provide joy. Yeah, yeah. The naysayers can grumble about wasted paper- but come on! One tiny piece of A5 card, versus all the Amazon packaging most of us get through in a year? If you are absolutely not doing gifts this year (boo!) then a personalized card from Moon Pig or similar is a fantastic way to go that little bit further. And if you have a sense of humour (and most importantly, so does your partner), a bit of Photoshop on a card can hopefully tickle their funny bone.

As a bit of a lockdown flashback, an online escape room or quiz is a great gift- it's something to do together that stretches the little grey cells, and you can do it without hiring a babysitter. There are dozens of themed ones out there so you're sure to find one to tickle a mutual fancy.

Cuddly toys, in my opinion, are a waste of space. It's probably because I'm asthmatic and they collect dust like a Dyson on steroids, but in my view, they have no place in a grown-up bedroom. I need to be brutal here.

Ladies, no man has ever wanted a cuddly toy as a gift. He'd prefer screwdrivers. Or beer…

Finally, you know best. You know what your partner likes, and by this stage in your life hopefully, you are spending Valentine's Day with someone you like, rather than just whoever happens to be able to get hold of festival tickets. It's a different, special kind of love. Not the wild, crazy one in your 20's. But a calmer and more beautiful one. You're not getting boring when you'd spend the day watching serial killer documentaries and eating pizza and on big flashy gestures. You're growing confident in yourself, and with the person you love.

So have a fantastic Valentine's Day. And whatever you do, and however you do it (oo-err!), do it with someone you love.

It's free
always has been, always will be

Similar Articles

It's free
always has been, always will be