It’s the month of love, and as usual, the euphoria permeates the air and leaves one gasping for breath after surviving asphyxiation by cupid’s hands. For some, planning starts in January, but for most, the excitement truly takes residence on the first day of February when shops start blaring love songs from speakers strategically placed by the store entrance, the aim, to lure you in and empty your wallet. Although the songs are nothing but heart-wrenching to the lonely and recently heartbroken, nobody cares about that.

It’s the crazy Valentine tradition
Hearts also start bursting with excitement in turn creating their own melody. The pounding and swelling of the organic pacemaker is almost visible to the naked eye of the stranger walking past the intoxicated by love.

It’s really difficult to ignore this day when it’s being thrust forcefully into your face. It’s the decorations, the vertigo emitting heart balloons floating everywhere, and the sudden pop of fresh red roses in every corner or stall. This is the only month where gifting a loved one with fake roses is an abominable crime carrying the weight of death by lethal injection as a sentence. Jewellery store owners and staff members are probably the most excited as anticipation of abundant surprise engagements brews amongst them. And so, they display their most prized and unique gemstone adorned rings right where your eye can’t resist.

That’s the true meaning of Valentine’s day
It symbolises love, that passionate, romantic love between two souls, but even if you are single, the world still permits you to celebrate it as well. This is the only special day in the year that is not jealous. Unlike Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, International Women’s Day, and International Men’s Day, it does not compete with anything and is rather happy to share its love without any stipulations so please don’t restrict yourself.

Valentine’s Day symbolises love, that passionate, romantic love between two souls

Don’t lock yourself in the house with a box of tissues tucked under your armpit as you sit on the couch sobbing whilst singing along to sad break-up songs or watch a classic love movie with tears rolling down your cheeks. Go and enjoy the day with your children if you have to, with your family members if you have to, or even a group of friends. It’s allowed.

To celebrate the monogamy of your choice
Society preaches monogamy as the ethos of morality. It is the manual of relationships, the what not to do and what to do of matters of the heart. A relationship between one man and one woman is the ideal, the utopia, but is it the reality?

The truth about relationships is that even though society elevates monogamy as the righteous practice, the same patriarchal society defends, protects, and perpetuates concealed polygamy as long as the perpetrator is a man. I am calling it concealed polygamy because it is not a secret that the man has more than one partner. His whole family and friends know that he has more than one party; it’s just the women in his life who are not aware that they are in polygamy or maybe a polyamorous relationship.

A patriarchal society defends, protects, and perpetuates concealed polygamy as long as the perpetrator is a man.

So, is it really monogamy I ask…
The real question you should be asking yourself as a woman in a relationship, especially with a man prone to cheating is, is he really cheating? Or are you maybe in an open relationship, it’s just that you were never consulted? How do you differentiate cheating from being in an open relationship? Or should I say, how many times should a man step out of the relationship before you admit you are no longer in a monogamous relationship?

My perspective is that most of us women are in a one-sided open relationship, that type where he is busy sowing the seeds of his loins whilst you happily and faithfully wait for him at home, oblivious.

You never received the communique
For most women, the memo of the one-sided open relationship was never made privy to them, but some have seen it and still choose to feign ignorance. If you choose to forgive infidelity over and over, then maybe it’s time you accept that you are in a one-sided open relationship. One-sided simply because the forgiveness won’t be that easy if the shoe was to be on the other foot.

Society crucifies a woman who cheats; her sentence is a life branding tattoo of an adulterous with ink too stubborn even for a laser beam. The same society will plead for, make excuses for, and very easily forgive and forget the deeds of a cheating man. So my question again is, is he cheating, or are you just in a one-sided open relationship?

For most women, the memo of the one-sided open relationship was never made privy to them

Is it dinner or flowers for you this month?
As we celebrate this month of love, I can’t help but wonder whose heart will be bleeding, and whose heart will be smiling. If you are in a one-sided open relationship it’s a given that someone is going to be hurt. Someone will be receiving roses and if lucky a beautifully wrapped package, but still dining alone. Somewhere else, someone will have made a romantic candlelit dinner with rose petals scattered on the floor and after hours of waiting, still, dine alone.

In a one-sided open relationship, there will definitely be someone in the world sleeping in a foetal position in a dark, dingy, and loveless bedroom, it’s a given.

Its the definition of monogamy
Allow me to lift my hand and declare that we have been brainwashed. I too am of the monogamous ideology. I am the type that believes in the ‘forever’ love, the one man one woman type of passion. The type who will stay celibate until I fall deeply and truly, head over heels in love. Patriarchy has once again managed to convince me and most women that the Prince Charming saving Sleeping Beauty fairy tale is real. Unfortunately, in the real world, Prince Charming is a nymphomaniac and society says that it is still okay because he is just being a man.

The same society then says as women, we have to be monogamous, in other words, be faithful to our nymphomaniacs. So happy month of love to those practising monogamy in a one-sided open relationship.