This Powerful Ad About a Transgender Mom Will Tug at Your Heartstrings
An unlikely ad for Vicks is touching the hearts of millions around the world.
Last month, an Indian commercial for Procter & Gamble's Vicks—yes, the cold and cough medicine brand—was released, showing the real-life story of a transgender woman and her adopted daughter. The 3 1/2-minute commercial has gone viral, racking up nearly 9.5 million views so far, sparking a larger conversation on social media about transgender rights in India.
The touching ad doesn’t push any products; instead, it depicts the “true story” of Gayatri, who was adopted after her birth mother died of AIDS, by transgender woman and activist, Gauri Sawant. The 15-year-old girl narrates the commercial, explaining her personal history and the warm bond she shares with her adoptive mom, who is revealed to be a transgender woman. "This is my mummy,” Gayatri says. “Isn't she lovely?"
"Mom has faced so many problems in life," Gayatri continues. “My civics text book says that everyone is entitled to the same basic rights. Then why is my mom denied them? That’s why I'm not going to be a doctor, I will be a lawyer. For my mom."
“Everyone deserves the touch of care,” the commercial ends, as we’re left looking for a box of tissues. It seems the internet was also moved by the story and the larger theme of LGBTQ rights in India.
While transgender women have a long history in India, it wasn’t until 2014 that the country’s Supreme Court issued a landmark ruling recognizing transgender individuals as a “third gender,” neither male nor female. But it doesn’t mean transgender people don’t continue to face discrimination in society today.
Watch the heartwarming commercial in full above.