International FOMO day


Canva/Molly Smith

It’s that time of the year. For a lot of us, this year is the same as always. That makes for a nationwide FOMO, or Fear of Missing Out. 

Why do you remember the month of February most of the time? Unless, of course, you’re a football fan or a thorough advertisement enjoyer. Football fans look forward to the annual Super Bowl, but what date is easily highlighted in pink? The fourteenth. 

  Schools across the globe witness gel stickers on classroom walls. Guidance offices are decorated in red confetti and metallic paper hearts. Your friends hand you gummies and candy hearts, claiming you to be their “galentine.” However, the most common take on Valentine’s Day is that people’s real hearts feel empty. 

  I annually ask my friends about their status. “Anything new?” I always get the same answers. “Bold of you to assume.” “Haha nope!” “I’m going to be single forever.” 

  I soon find that it is just another thing we have in common. A common, almost annual theme. Jokes are cracked as friends are temporarily made fun of, but to cover what? 

  Every year, my mother gets a bouquet of flowers and some caramel Godiva chocolates from my step-dad. These two things are what she finds simply beautiful, given that she has always loved these. So, every year, it is always followed by, “You didn’t have to do that,” or, “These are lovely!”

  I’ve noticed that my older sister makes the same joke every year. “Imagine not being single.” “Imagine men caring enough to buy you flowers.” But this year, she can’t make the same rebuttal. Even she has a Valentine.  

  But for a lot of us, this year is the same as always. That makes for a nationwide FOMO, or Fear of Missing Out. 

  Fear of Missing Out can occur when your friend group gets coffee, but forgets to invite you. Maybe it occurs when everybody on Instagram is at the cheerleader’s house party and you don’t even know the cheerleader, 

   Or maybe it occurs when it seems like everyone around has a special someone except for you. 

  I asked a few single friends, who prefer to stay anonymous, about their status this February. 

  Perhaps you are not missing out, because you are not alone in feeling left out this February. 

  A 2020 survey conducted by Plenty of Fish reveals that 60% of single Gen Z and 52% of single Millennials find Valentine’s Day to be putting pressure onto them. That same survey displayed that only 20% of single people were actually excited for the holiday. 

  “Being single does make me feel lonely, whether it’s February or October. It doesn’t matter the month, there’s always time to be sad.” 

  “I’ve never had a partner. Ever. It’s nothing new, but I’m with the FOMO that people experience.” 

  “I’ve never minded being single. I’m glad to rely on how much I love myself. I don’t need outside love.” 

   “It makes me sad to be single. I miss being in the relationship I was in last year. So this year makes me pretty sad.” 

    Instead of feeling as if you’re missing out further this Valentine’s Day as a single person, see the independence and the fact that you are the furthest from alone. May you be your own Valentine.