“You Don’t Bring Me Flowers Anymore”

– The Valentine’s Day Theme Song of those Separated and Divorced and for Business?”

– written by Mary Krauel, published in Star Business Club

Many of us may remember Neil Diamond and Barbra Streisand singing this song. I remembered thinking then how sad it was when people remember with nostalgia the way things were between their partner and what it is now that they have parted. As Valentine’s approaches this song came to mind again for all those people who are separated or divorced who will not be receiving “flowers anymore”.

There will be many dreading this Valentine’s as not only will they be constantly reminded of what “It used to be…” but it will emphasize a feeling of lack. I don’t just mean a lack of flowers but of “love” and feeling loved.  It is bad enough having to deal with the emotional stress of separation and divorce without it being in your face as it is on this day.

Does that mean those that are happy and in love should not celebrate that love? Of course not. It means that those that are not, don’t have to hide or stand on the sidelines.

What business would only cater to half their potential target audience?  Yet on Valentine’s one of the biggest business days for florists, chocolatiers, perfumeries, and all other retailers – they do just that.  The focus is only on couples.

I see this as a great opportunity for business to not only increase sales but to more importantly help separating and divorcing couples learn to love themselves again or perhaps for the first time in their lives.

There is a major turning point in this “theme song”.

“But used-to-bes don’t count anymore
They just lay on the floor
Till we sweep them away”

That’s the cue – yesterday and yesterday’s business paradigms do not count anymore so get that broom out.

Valentine’s is about love that can include your friends, family, children and YOU. Loving yourself – is about learning who you are inside and the kind of person you want to be and the kind of life you may be wanting now because what you pursued before did not work out. It is about learning to love the real you, and saying that I am worth loving. When you can love yourself then that is when another person will also be able to love you again.

I can think of all kinds of gift ideas that I would get for my friends who are without partners and perhaps need to be told someone cares about them and loves them. To be made to feel special on a day they wish would just disappear.

Let’s start with your kids. Help them make ready their valentine’s for school. Make one for each of your kids and have them make one for you, their siblings, and yes even the other parent. It will show them that love means forgiveness and understanding even if the other person hurt you. Because you know what – you may have hurt your kids during this tough time too.

Treat yourself with something that will make you feel good about yourself, laugh, or to just be you. Go buy yourself those flowers or chocolates. Go to the spa, or hockey game. You deserve it. I challenge all businesses to be creative in touching the hearts of the broken hearted and to share those stories with me.

Love is about giving. So give of yourself. Volunteering makes us feel good about ourselves and often we get more back than we give. Volunteering is a great way to get out of “the used-to-bes” playing in your head and into your heart. When you are able to give to those less fortunate than you, it is a wonderful reminder to be grateful for all that you do have in life.

Lastly don’t choose to be alone. Be with friends, family or others who are also thinking about those flowers they don’t get anymore. Not to commiserate but to celebrate love for self and all that is good in you.

Don’t end your song with “You don’t bring me flowers anymore” as Neil and Barbra do. That is living in the past. Who says you can’t get your own flowers? Create your new song by living in the present appreciating “you”.


Mary Krauel, Senior Negotiator/Mediator – PRM Mediation – www.PRMmediation.com

Divorce, Corporate, and Elder Care Issues – Serving Southwestern Ontario from Mississauga and London.