A detergent commercial makes a simple, powerful point about inequality

Pass the tissues.
Pass the tissues.
Image: Ariel India
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Trust us, it is not too early in the day to tear up while watching a laundry detergent commercial.

Ariel India, Procter & Gamble, and creative agency BBDO Worldwide team up in this new video to deliver a moving, intergenerational message about the roots and repercussions of gender inequality.

The video, part of Ariel India’s #ShareTheLoad campaign, depicts the numerous tasks a working mother undertakes over the course of one evening to keep all the plates spinning: fixing dinner, making sure her son has done his homework, confirming travel for her father visiting from out of town, working after-hours and from home, doing the family’s laundry.

It’s enough to leave the woman’s father—who watches as she darts around the house while her husband sits drinking tea in front of the TV—feeling apologetic, for not pitching in around the house more when she was little, and for not stopping her when she played house as a little girl. “I never told you that it’s not your job alone, but your husband’s, too,” he thinks to himself.

Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook, shared the video on her Facebook page on Feb. 24 and praised its compelling message. “This is one of the most powerful videos I have ever seen,” she writes. “When little girls and boys play house they model their parents’ behavior; this doesn’t just impact their childhood games, it shapes their long-term dreams.” Within 16 hours, her post was shared more than 48,000 times.

As women increasingly make gains in the professional world, there is a growing call for their partners to share the workload at home. Even if it’s just marketing, Ariel India’s #ShareTheLoad commercial asks an important question—Is laundry only a woman’s job?—and answers it boldly: Nope.