In elementary school children are often required to give each of his or her classmates a Valentine on Valentine's Day. Homemade cards, candy and store-bought notes are stuffed into student-crafted mail boxes on each child's desk, wishing one another "A Dudetastic Valentine's," or "A V-Day fit for a princess." But once middle school hits, the cuteness of Ninja Turtle and Disney Princess Valentines wears off. Something from everyone isn't required, making receiving a note from a member of the opposite sex that much bigger of a deal. In high school this is even more amplified.
Sioux City's West High School is no exception.
As Principal Jacque Wyant explained, on Valentine's Day there are so many flower deliveries for various students the staff practically cannot keep up.
"On Valentine's Day we have to bring extra tables into the main office," Wyant said. "It gets crazy."
But for all of the goodies distributed, not all students feel great about the holiday. At a lunch break last month, a group of 12 opened up about Valentine's Day in high school.
"If you're single, Valentine's Days sucks," Izzy Robley expressed. "You don't really do anything unless you're dating someone."
Fellow student Hope Hansen agreed, saying that Valentine's today is probably celebrated differently than it was 20 years ago.
"People now don't really care about it unless you have a boyfriend or girlfriend," Hansen concluded. "I feel like back in the day if a guy simply liked a girl he got her flowers, but now that's not the case. Guys have to know the feeling is mutual."
While the students didn't seem to think girls were required to give their boyfriends things for Valentine's Day, they agreed boyfriends had to bestow gifts to girls if they wanted to stay in the relationship.
"I wouldn't get flowers for a guy," Robley explained. "But doing something not tangible, something they enjoy doing anyway is perfect. Last Valentine's Day I bought my guy's favorite movie on DVD and then we watched it together."
For couple Aubrey Hill and Avery Thedford, who have been dating almost a year, the holiday isn't the end all, but Thedford promised he already has plans for the day.
"I can't say what I'm doing yet because she's sitting right here," Thedford said.