But Feb 14th was a bomb.
Valentine's Day was a bust, and is now hanging over the two of you as a couple, and you're not sure how to recover.
First, let's adjust your assessment of the night -- almost no evening is a make-or-break in a relationship. A romance is the sum of a couple's experiences, not the average of the highs and lows. This past Valentine's Day was just "non-progress", not the beginning of the end.
Here are three things to do to get back on track...
Acknowledge It: a common mantra at Kelleher International is "openness". Great couples don't play games and hope the other person figures out what's going on. The first step to a full recovery of a bad experience is calling it out. When you share your disappointment with the evening with your partner, avoid phrases that begin (or include) things like "when you did this" or "and then you said...". Instead, focus on phrases like "the evening made me feel like...", or "this conversation made me wonder if...". Make the discussion about the relationship, not the activities of the evening.
Redo It: If the evening went south because of a series of snafus and logistical misses, then rebook the entire evening -- same restaurant, same flowers, another gift. Have the great evening you had planned, and laugh about the "redo". If you had a more personal bad experience with her family, his friends, or between the two of you -- create an opportunity to get it right the second time. Book another trip to the family compound, suggest that you host a group dinner for her friends, or plan an evening at home together and revisit the bad discussion.
Create a New Couple "Habit": the strongest forests grow from scorched earth. Figure out a way to convert the "miss" on Valentine's Day into a positive couple habit. If the tension came from a lack of thoughtfulness on one side, plan a deliberate date once a month around really knowing the other person. If you somehow offended a special friend, suggest you set a standing monthly dinner with them and express the importance to you that you have a great relationship with them.
Let It Go: it's just like it sounds. Relationships are the sum of a couple's experiences.