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Stop telling women to rest because “they need to put their oxygen mask on first before helping others”

February 18, 2022

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Stop telling women to rest because they “can’t pour from an empty cup” or because “they need to put their oxygen mask on first before helping others.”

Statements like that presume women should only rest – or might only be interested in resting – so that the can turn around and use that energy to serve others.

And that’s bullshit.

Women deserve rest because they are people who deserve to feel good and enjoy their lives.


Implying that women can/should bring themselves to rest only if it helps them serve others perpetuates a dangerous and harmful narrative about a woman’s role in our society.

It’s subtle. But it’s there.

Think maybe I’m overreacting to this one a bit?

When was the last time you heard someone say “you can’t pour from an empty cup” or “put our oxygen mask on first” …

to a man?

I rarely have.

I interpret this to be a societal acknowledgement that men get to rest just because. They aren’t expected to feel the need to justify that rest by thinking of the people the’ll serve with that renewed energy. They just rest to take care of themselves and enjoy life.

And that’s terrific.

We just need the same to apply to women.

The narratives we tell ourselves about why we do things matter. You mist think, “Well as long as I rest, who cares why.”

But imagine resting just so you get up to take care of others.

And now imagine resting just because you want to feel wonderful and enjoy your life.

One feels flat and constricted.

The other feels expansive and light and exciting.

One means “go to bed early.”

And the other might mean that – and it also means doing fun things that light you up.

Let’s pick the option where we feel more expansive and light and free.

Let’s stop saying those constricting, cringe-y you-get-rest-only-to-serve-others-vibe phrases to women.

Let’s start encouraging rest for no purpose other than we deserve to enjoy our lives.

Spread the word.

What do you think?

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