Love Doctors Prescribe Advice to Hopeless, Clueless Romantics

Married therapists give advice for Valentine's Day stories.

Valentine’s Day can be a dreamy time for hopeless romantics or a nightmare for their clueless counterparts.

Texas Tech University psychology professors Clyde Hendrick and Susan Hendrick, also known as the "love doctors" and recently featured in the PBS series "State of Tomorrow," offer several tips for surviving the holiday, no matter what end of the spectrum you fall on. For more on the Hendricks or other Valentine’s Day experts, visit the Hot Topics section of experts.ttu.edu.

For the clueless:
• Don’t be pressured to spend lavishly. Thoughtful gifts can be extravagant or inexpensive.
• Ask your partner what he or she likes. Don’t feel like you have to be a mind-reader.
• Don’t let Valentine’s Day be the only day you show affection for your partner.
• Realize that one size does not fit all. The traditional flowers, candy or cards may not be the best gift for your loved one.
• Ask your partner if there is anything you could do to make his or her life easier. It’s the little things that count. During busy times, make an effort to "check in" with your partner to say you miss him or her and would like to be able to spend more time together.

For the romantics:
• Be gracious. If your partner made a good attempt to give you something special, be thankful whether you like the gift or not.
• Understand that your partner doesn’t love you any less if he or she cannot always anticipate your wants.
• Communication is key. For couples who communicate well, every day can be Valentine’s Day.

For everyone:
• Remember that the best gift you can give is your time, your attention, your love, and yourself.

CONTACT: Clyde Hendrick, Horn Professor of Psychology, Department of Psychology, Texas Tech University, (806) 742-3711, ext. 248, or clyde.hendrick@ttu.edu; Susan Hendrick, Horn Professor of Psychology, Department of Psychology, Texas Tech University, (806) 742-3711, ext. 244, or s.hendrick@ttu.edu.