I was recently thanked for my efforts in helping empower women. That hasn’t really been one of my life-long goals but I took the statement as a compliment and felt good that I could assist other women feel stronger. Which brings me to my surprise when I recently noticed a commercial for a sleeping aid that demonstrated the celebration of a woman when she successfully slept through the night. Now this commercial was not illustrating a new, young mother who was sleep-deprived as a result of a new baby. All mothers know that feeling and that is definitely cause for celebration. No, this commercial was a middle-aged woman, skipping through life, hoisting a flag in her front yard announcing that she successfully slept the previous night. This commercial on its own doesn’t baffle or confuse me. It’s not until I compare another familiar commercial that illustrates a similarly aged man, celebrating in much the same way as the middle-aged woman, with one exception. The celebration for the man is that he had had sex the night before, thanks to Cialis or Viagra or some other erectile-dysfunction drug. Say what? Women celebrate when they sleep and men celebrate when they have sex? Come on girls! Can’t we do better than that?
Don’t get me wrong – I understand that women and men are different, remembering the whole Mars versus Venus argument, but has society come to the point that the reason for celebration for women is when they get some sleep? I enjoy a good’s night sleep just as much as anyone but women can surely do better than that when evaluating their success in life. I think of the lyrics from the Helen Reddy song, “I Am Woman”, where she proudly sings, “I am woman, hear me roar”. Have women been told so many times that they are so different from men that they now celebrate when we get some sleep? Is that really a reason for women to ‘roar? Rather than ‘roaring’ about getting a good’s night sleep, let’s roar because we feel good about ourselves, mentally, physically and spiritually. Let’s roar about our efforts to make our lives better and other’s lives better, whether it is at home, work or in our communities. And I’m all for celebrating good sex too. Where is that handsome husband of mine? Roar.