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February 13th, 2011

Valentine’s Day is not universally enjoyed. We like to believe that most people are happily coupled through marriage, partnerships, civil unions, and other family configurations. Yet, the recent US Census revealed some significant discrepancies with these assumptions.
The reality is that 42% of the country’s population over the age of 18 is single. 54% are women and 60% have never been married. Twenty-five percent (25%) of U.S. singles are divorced and 15% are widowed. There are 15 million Americans over the age of 65 who are unmarried and single. They comprise about 16% of all unattached members in our society. It’s unlikely that these people have Valentines to share their love with. Some may have chosen not to the majority probably have had some kind of loss.

For example, widows and widowers, divorced men and women, parents who’ve lost a child, children who’ve lost a parent, and others, such as grandparents, aunts, uncles, niece and nephews, are more likely to feel alone on Valentine’s Day.
While we have our parties at work, school, community centers, and other gathering places that share holidays, let’s be aware that everyone around us doesn’t have a special Valentine. We can give love in many ways to many different people who are in our lives – children and grandchildren, parents and grandparents, relatives, friends, neighbors and co-workers. What’s important is to recognize the possibilities of love, wherever we find it!