12 Valentine’s Day Horror Stories That Will Convince You To Stay In This Year

Illustrated by Aimee Sy.
Love is in the air — or it's lining every drugstore shelf with heart-shaped chocolate, at least — and visions of romantic Valentine's Day dates are dancing through the minds of people across the country. But what happens when those romantic dates turn out to be not-so-romantic?
For every rom-com-worthy night, there's a Valentine's Day horror story, and we've collected some truly terrible tales. Ahead, read real-life stories of awkward, infuriating, and embarrassing V-Days, but be warned: These stories just might make you want to skip the holiday all together.
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"On my first Valentine's Day with my fiancé, we tried to go to Cheesecake Factory without a reservation and ended up eating takeout in his car. Later that night, I got food poisoning at his house and spent hours getting sick repeatedly while he tried to clean up after me. We hadn't even been together for 6 months at that point." — Sydney, 23
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"My now-husband pulled out all the stops making an epic, three-course meal. In the process, he clogged our kitchen sink, also leading to our bathroom sink overflowing. I think he and our landlord stayed up until 1 a.m. trying to fix it and save our hardwood floors from water damage, sadly no romance was on the table that night!" — Allison, 32
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"In college I wanted to make dinner for my boyfriend, and decided on salmon (idk?). Someone told me I should poach it, so I did. His apartment ended up reeking of fish (into the hallway) and his roommate was like, 'It smells like fish.' I was pretty much mortified." — Cory, 25
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"About a week before Valentine's Day last year, one of my friends broke up with her long-term boyfriend, so since we were all single she, I, and two other friends decided to act upon this Valentine's Day freedom and made dinner reservations for just the girls, followed by a fun night out.

We lived in a small college town, so fine dining was extremely limited and basically everyone we knew had made reservations at the same restaurant. So of course the hostess at the restaurant went to seat us and she ironically placed us in the booth next to a table where my friend's ex and his new date were sitting.

Long story short, my friends and I dedicated our first round of drinks to her ex and his date, who felt extremely uncomfortable and cut their evening short. I have it all on film saved in my Snapchat memories for a laugh every now and then." — Chelsea, 22
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"My long-distance boyfriend dumped me via Skype on Valentine’s Day because I had previously had a depressive episode and 'my problems were too difficult for him to deal with.' On top of that, I went to the doctor that day and was diagnosed with a sinus infection, so I had to wait for an antibiotic at CVS where they were playing Taylor Swift love songs and the store was filled with college guys buying last minute chocolates and teddy bears for their girlfriends." — Sarah, 22
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"I was once dumped on Valentine's Day, in a text message, sent from a borrowed cell phone, by a guy who had made a huge deal multiple times about how his mom had always raised him to be a gentleman." — wisebloodfoolheart on Reddit.
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"I brought one of those chocolate roses to my crush's house after school in 4th grade and it went like this: Mom stops the car in front of the girl's house. She's in the front yard. I open the door, rose in hand, beaming. And then I snagged my foot on the strap of my backpack, which was in the floorboard, and fell on the pavement right in front of the girl and a few of her neighborhood friends. I managed to hold on to the flower and make the delivery, but I was too embarrassed to really say anything. It's a memorable cringe moment from my childhood." — godblessmrswalker on Reddit.
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"In high school I went out for Valentine's Day with my then-boyfriend. We had been dating for almost a year, but this was the first time we ever really went anywhere (typical high school relationship I guess). So we got dinner, and right before we left we exchanged presents. I was going to a fine arts school at this point so I had made him something in class that I was really proud of and hid a gift card to a store he loved inside. He gave me one of those $5 stuffed animals from Walgreens and just kind of threw it at me, with no card or anything.

After that we're walking to the car, he's taking up the entire sidewalk almost, so I'm trying to walk through the mushy grass (it had been raining) in heels. I fall in the mud, practically ruin my dress, and he laughs at me. The worst part is that he didn't even take the present I worked so hard to make for him — he 'accidentally' left it at my house when he dropped me off. I still have it, too." — monadologee on Reddit.
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"In sixth grade I had a crush on a girl and I wanted to send her a rose (something the school did) but I didn't want her to know it was me. My handwriting is incredibly distinguishable and I was really shy, so I paid one of my friends a dollar to write her name and 'Happy Valentines Day, From Your Secret Admirer' on the card.

Everyone at my lunch table watched as one of the teachers delivered the card to Lauren (the girl). We continued to watch as she smiled and giggled with her friends, and then she jumped up and ran to the desk where they were selling the cards and roses, wrote some stuff down, and then ran back to her table. A few moments later, the teacher got up and walked over to my table, she gave a card to my friend (the one I paid to write the note). It was from Lauren — she had recognized his handwriting and wanted to go on a date. He got up and went to her table and accepted the offer. (Jackass).

They went on a date, and were 'dating' (as much as 6th graders can be) for the rest of the year. She moved to El Paso at the end of the school year. Never to be seen again." — lostfan815 on Reddit.
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"Valentine's Day is also my birthday. The year I turned 21, I spent the day with vertigo because of a double ear infection caused by a sinus infection — and because I was on antibiotics, I couldn't drink. And because it was Valentine's Day, everyone had dates.

I hate February 14." — deathofregret on Reddit.
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"One year my ex-girlfriend and I decided that we'd just wing it on Valentine's Day instead of trying to make reservations or plan anything too special. We had to go to the mall anyway and decided that we'd have a nice dinner at a fondue restaurant while we were there. But it was of course full of people who did think to make reservations — and so was every other restaurant in the mall. We ended up at Taco Bell eating our weight in quesadillas and fake nacho cheese. So it wasn't too bad after all." — Kasey, 27
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"The night before Valentine's Day, I went to the bar for dinner and drinks with my boyfriend at the time. We discussed our plans for the weekend and he told me that we had to be downtown at 4:00pm the next day, but he didn't want to tell me more because it was a surprise. About an hour later, he seemed a bit down. I looked at him and said, 'Everything okay? You want to get out of here?' He replied with, 'I can't do this anymore' and proceeded to break up with me. I immediately walked out and never heard from him again. I was upset at first, but I ended up meeting my current boyfriend the very next day, on Valentine's Day. We'll be celebrating our three-year anniversary this year!" — Jaclyn, 28