Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is used to making headlines, ever since he took office. But in a turn of events, a different Trudeau is making the news rounds this week.
Sophie Grégoire Trudeau came into the spotlight after she said she needs help to take on more public duties in her unofficial role as Canadian first lady.
Speaking to a French-language newspaper, the former TV presenter explained that although she wanted to do more and promote causes, she is having a hard time coping with all the responsibilities with just one staff member.
“I’d love to be everywhere, but I can’t. I have three children and a husband who is prime minister. I need help. I need a team to help me serve the people,” she told Le Soleil.
“It’s hard to choose, because it’s touching when people ask for your help. People really lay out their suffering in some of the letters I receive,” Grégoire Trudeau added.
Unfortunately, people did not take her statement positively and soon Twitter was exploding with tweets from people expressing their outrage. Many of them were of the opinion that Grégoire Trudeau was out of touch, and not as competent as the previous first lady who managed everything with just one aide.
Critics also said her statement depicted a stark contrast between the life of the wife of a prime minister and that of every other Canadian woman who has to juggle between numerous tasks on her own.
“Hearing statements like that certainly does not speak to the reality that Canadian women face and the kind of struggles that, you know, that they’re undertaking day in, day out,” opposition MP Niki Ashton said.
“Certainly the kind of statements we heard from the prime minister’s wife, you know, speak to that disconnect with the reality that Canadian women face.”
Soon the hashtag #prayforSophie came into being as social media users slammed her request for help.
If public funds must be used to give Sophie Gregoire Trudeau more help, I suggest it come from the CBC's budget. #PrayForSophie— Roadmagnet (@roadmagnet) May 14, 2016
Sophie Trudeau, role model.— Holly Nicholas (@ilikerox) May 13, 2016
"Don't worry kids, the help will get that."
If Sophie Trudeau wants a larger staff to help w/her responsibilities, kids & job, other working moms shouldn't have to pay for it. #cdnpoli— Paige T. MacPherson (@paigemacp) May 12, 2016
Please help Sophie Trudeau Gregoire in her time of need. Text DIVA911 to donate and ease her suffering. #PrayForSophie— Matt Skinner (@KrankyKanuck) May 12, 2016
However, one kind soul took it upon herself to write an open-letter to the first lady, sympathizing with her situation.
“As a woman, I support you. You are the wife of our prime minister, and no one who hasn’t been in your position knows exactly what that entails. Your life is unlike anyone else’s in the country and it can’t be compared to the 'average Canadian woman.' No one else walks in your shoes or lives your life , and no one knows what you do when you’re not in public.”
It is important to note that being the first lady and a full-time wife and mom, Grégoire Trudeau must have quite a lot on her plate. While most women obviously live life without a staff to organize it, those women aren't receiving dozens of requests for appearances and other favors on a weekly basis.
There is nothing wrong with the fact that she is requesting for help only to fulfill her official duties more effectively, and take Canada to a better place. In fact, it just shows she is more committed to the country and her work.
Grégoire Trudeau has not yet commented on the incident.