All three of these gorgeous ladies serve as different influential figures, with Sarah portraying Carrie Bradshaw on the Sex And The City, Michelle Obama as the country’s First Lady, and Kerry Washington as Olivia Pope on Scandal.
The interview with the three of them covered a slew of topics including the importance of help, facing female veterans, and much more.
See some snippets of the trio’s interview below:
On the importance of asking for help…
First Lady Michelle Obama: I never try to come close to comparing my life to these women’s lives. But, if you think about it, when you [have] a spouse who travels or is away a lot, women do adapt…. The challenge is when the missing spouse comes back and they’re trying to reintegrate into a well-oiled machine…. How do you let yourself become vulnerable when you don’t know when that call will come, and they’ve got to [go away again]?… And many of these women are young. When I was going through this [when President Obama got into politics], I was in my thirties, I had my career, and I had family with me. I [try to] put myself in the place of some of these young women—maybe they’re in their twenties, they have their third kid, they’re not established in their careers, they’re miles away from their family—and imagine the stresses. So my advice is, ask for help. Keep asking. Because that’s the only way I survived. My women friends—how we get through is we reach out.
Kerry Washington: Yeah, I was just on the phone with an actress yesterday. She had questions about child care. And I said, “First, congratulations on asking for help. I’m so happy you have gotten to this point. I’m going to email you resources.” We have to affirm each other for asking for help. And not act as if being stoic is what makes you a success.
MO: We have to keep encouraging women to know that asking for help is not a weakness; it is a necessity. We all do it. Kerry Washington needs help a lot.
KW: A lot.
MO: Sarah Jessica Parker needs it. Michelle Obama needs a lot of help. A lot of help. Lots of help…. [Laughter.] We’re all mothers. And when you think about what keeps us up at night, it usually revolves around our kids…. Heaven help—I used to rue the day I’d wake up and a child was sniffling. You’re like, “Oh my God. You’re not sick, are you? No. Get up.” ’Cause you’re thinking, What am I gonna do? There’s this sick kid. I’ve got to go to work. I don’t have family in the area. [And remember,] many military spouses have transferred, so they’re not in their community. They don’t have extended family [nearby].
On why issues facing female veterans can be difficult to understand and support…
KW: There is this idea that those who serve are untouchable heroes. [But] the more we hear what people are going through, [we realize] it’s what every woman is going through…. The challenges are just put under a magnifying glass because their lives are so extraordinary.
Sarah Jessica Parker: I feel like there’s a laundry list of issues they face…. Being a working mother, serving, returning from Iraq or Afghanistan—I almost don’t know where to begin…. And I feel intimidated by their service; I feel ashamed that I haven’t served. So I almost feel like I’m patronizing by inquiring how to help. When you see a serviceman or -woman, you always—I always—say, “Thank you for your service.” But you know that’s not enough…. What do we do? Every community has a community of veterans. Where do we begin?
On destigmatizing mental health and PTSD…
KW: I think it’s really important to take the stigma away from mental health…. My brain and my heart are really important to me. I don’t know why I wouldn’t seek help to have those things be as healthy as my teeth. I go to the dentist. So why wouldn’t I go to a shrink?
MO: Sarah Jessica, you spoke to a veteran struggling with PTSD.
SJP: Jennifer [Madden]. She brought up [the fact] that there are those who return with PTSD—and while that needs attention and focus, they also want to not be considered damaged goods.
MO: That’s exactly right.
SJP: It’s important that when they go to meet a potential employer, this person knows they are capable. And that any issues they have are the same ones any of us might have—whether we lose a family member or have a period of sadness. We want to talk about the public health challenges. But we also don’t want to put so much focus on these issues that veterans seem like they are made of glass. You don’t want to meet them and you’re like, “Are you OK?”
KW: They aren’t broken; they are heroes. They have extraordinary discipline, courage, and capacity—that’s what we can focus on.
See the rest of the interview with these three powerful women here.
SOURCE: Glamour Magazine | PHOTO CREDIT: Patrick Demarchelier