An outstanding campaign from Vicks narrating the true story of  Gayatri whose biological mother died of HIV when she was six years old, after which she was adopted by Gauri has gone viral. The story unfolds in a lovely heartwarming narration by the girl as she reminisces all the special moments of love, care and affection between the mother and child and ends in revealing Gauri as a transgender as her doting mom. The video leaves us with a poignant girl standing and thinking that when everyone is entitled to basic rights then why not her mom? I want to be become a lawyer for my mom she says.

The ad leaves you with a fuzzy, humbled heart.

On Motherhood & Adoption:

Firstly, it does so much for making you appreciate that a loving caring heart is not limited to the child you have given birth too. Anyone that nurtures is a mother.  Motherhood is earned by the deed, not conferred by giving birth.

On  Gender Equality

And yes that mother with a golden heart is a transgender – one stroke brings such respect to a gender we have always called the “hijrah”, standing begging at intersections who we hastily roll up our windows to or quickly cough money, lest we die from their touch..or a painful comic in the Bollywood movies or even worse was the cold hearted villainess of the brothel (like Sadashiv Amrapurkur in Sadak)

In just a little over three minutes, this ad has given us a timely nudge. Dear Moms, we live in a rapidly changing world.  The queer that we have pretended do not exist.. the LGBQ community is now emerging.. from that was in the closet, lurking in the shadows, turned away from  to a real person, who could be in our family and friends. They are surfacing in movies like Kapoor and Sons, in gentle hints like in Beauty and the Beast and in very popular teen novels like Percy Jackson. (In The House of Hades, Nico is forced by Cupid to reveal that he had a crush on Percy Jackson, revealing that he is homosexual. Yes, I read all my kid’s books). Shikhandi and other such tales appear all through our mythological stories and now when my kids ask me I need to be ready.

It is essential for us to be inclusive of everyone and accept that humanity – the love and empathy to care for another and to feel the pain of another is what gender equality is all about.  So just be human – if you see some whose sexual preferences are different from your standards – a boy who likes pink or reads books – Stop before calling him a SISSY, a girl who is aggressive – Stop before calling her a TOMBOY and that “queer” kid who you wish your son is not friends with..Call him home for a playdate please.

Acceptance and Dignity to have right to choose is indeed a fundamental right.

#Stop Judging, Start Caring!

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