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"Forgetting" Valentine's Day is No Coincidence says Dr. Bonnie

Warning to men: "Forgetting Valentine's Day is not coincidental" says relationship therapist and adultery expert, Dr. Bonnie Eaker Weil. "It's an unconscious, destructive, grudge holding, romance wrecker." Make Valentine's Day sizzle instead!

Dr. Bonnie Eaker Weil, PhD warns couples about how Valentine's Day can be destructive and can even lead to divorce. It does not have to be, consider Valentine's day a litmus test for taking the temperature of a marriage or relationship. Wives or girlfriends expect romance magic and sizzle on the most romantic day of the year. Instead, they are extremely disappointed if their husbands or boyfriends "forget" this romantic holiday.

Forgetting Valentine's Day is "accidentally" on purpose to create drama, a fight, even a breakup, temporary as it may be. It's a wake-up call, and a cry for help. His behavior is a symptom of unresolved relationship debris. Dr. Bonnie calls it "revenge forgetting" to her patients. The "forgetful" partner may have some resentment or hold a grudge with anger. Maybe he feels taken for granted or hates feeling nagged (brought on by stonewalling or not listening) or demanded upon. He may harbor negative feelings subconsciously, so he redirects this by disappointing her. He displaces his own quiet rage by getting his wife angry.

Some excuses women should never accept are: it's only a retail holiday, it's too commercial, every day is Valentine's Day, restaurants are crowded and too expensive, or florists rip you off. These excuses cause disappointing feelings and are real "romance wreckers." They set the stage for distance, detachment, and possibly divorce.

Dr. Bonnie teaches SmartHeart skills, as emphasized in Make Up, Don't Break Up, to help identify a grudge and prevent build up of resentments. Learning how to "fight fair" can increase passion by clearing the air. These "skills" especially help men learn to communicate by appointment instead of walking out of the room during discussions. "Fair fighting" teaches empathy and affection and this increases passion when the offending partner has a time limit for fighting and has permission do so, in short intervals. Examples, performed by real, live couples, can be found in Make Up, Don't Break Up's accompanying video, "How to Fall in Love and Stay in Love for Singles and Couples." Men need many "time outs." They are allergic to women's emotionality. With "fair fighting," men can air their resentments instead of storing them and the conflict works as an aphrodisiac for eventual passion. The power is in getting heard, not getting mad. Letting go of grudges is not about being right or fair, it's about what works.

If a partner is missing out on Valentine's day, he is missing out on one of the most romantic days and moments for potential intimacy. Forgetting the holiday is often a recurring pattern, so Dr. Bonnie suggests combating that by encouraging wives and girlfriends to take the initiative. Remind him about the Valentine's Day, go shopping with him for it, and get him excited about the celebration. To seize the moment, use Dr. Bonnie's SmartHeart tips from her book "Make Up, Don't Break Up" and accompanying video "How to Fall in Love and Stay in Love for Singles and Couples." Since Valentine's Day can be used to measure the temperature of a relationship, more often than not, men forgetting Valentine's Day is a sign of something more. These warning signs can be signs of adultery or the ripening of a relationship for an affair, so heed the warning. Men are not in touch with their feelings and typically hold in these feelings. Men need to be guided as they don't always know how to feel or what they feel. Most men are "connectable by instruction." To quote Dr. Jeff Weil, Dr. Bonnie's husband, "If I knew what I felt, I would tell you, so I welcome your help." SmartHeart dialogue was born by dialoguing to help Jeff understand what he was feeling and be able to express it. SmartHeart dialogue helps them dig deep with small doses of communication and results in an endorphin high with "play" after the talks.

Kissing is a "Smart Heart" opportunity that emits Oxytocin and releases "feel good" hormones that bond you to your partner and create a feeling of safety. This negates the bad feelings a partner might harbor. If issues remain unresolved, they are a wake up call and a cry for help, so Dr. Bonnie recommends counseling. Romance should be number one priority on your list and it is the first to go when relationship troubles are brewing.

Beyond forgetting Valentine's year after year, some other signs that he may be secretly harboring a grudge include,: excusing his behavior, minimizing the holiday, putting down his partner for wanting to celebrate, makes fun of the holiday, acting like a Scrooge, pushing partner away, turned off when affection is initiated by the other, leaves early in the day, comes home late, is argumentative, is not talkative around you but is with others, little or no intimacy with partner, "too tired" or uses work to distance themselves, shuts down when approached, stonewalls with silence, denies anything is wrong, does not want to discuss the grudge, or gets moody when asked about it.

To grudge bust,: do not say yes when mean no, watch out for delayed reactions that cause resentment later, stand your ground, don't cave even if it's easier, "act as if" even if you don't "feel" the good feelings, do not do "peace at any price" it leads to war, write letter representing partner's apology for hurt caused and show your partner the feelings.

For more information on "fighting fair" to fight grudges and SmartHeart skills, enroll in Dr. Bonnies online education to-go course, Marriage and Relationships: Keys to Success. Check out her book, winner of NYTimes Reader's Choice Award, "Make Up, Don't Break Up: Finding and Keeping Love for Singles and Couples" for more warning signs and solutions to reach magic in marriage.

Dr. Bonnie Eaker Weil (Dr. Bonnie) is a relationship expert who was named by Psychology Today as one of America’s best therapists, and by New York Magazine as one of New York City’s best therapists and US Commerce association. Manhattan best therapist. Known as “The Adultery Buster” and the “No. 1 Love Expert,” she is the best-selling author of Adultery: The Forgivable Sin(adapted into a Lifetime movie starring actress Kate Jackson), Make Up Don’t Break Up, Finding and Keeping Love for Singles and Couples (including online video: How to Fall in Love and Stay in Love for Singles and Couples), Can We Cure and Forgive Adultery?, Staying Not Straying, How Not to (S)mother Your Man and Keep a Woman Happy, and Financial Infidelity: Seven Steps to Conquering the #1 Relationship Wrecker.

Dr. Bonnie has appeared on ABC’s Good Morning America, a three-day series on NBC’s The Today Show, The Oprah Winfrey Show five times, a four day series on Fox TV regarding dating, Discovery Health documentary "Unfaithful" and A&E on addictions. She appears frequently on ABC, Fox, CBS and NBC News, The View, 20/20, and CNN. Visit Dr. Bonnie at

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