Tag Archives: gender

“Every Time the Sun Comes Up” by Sharon Van Etten

Really feeling this today. Boy. Many other posts I have read mark “Every Time the Sun Comes Up” by Sharon Van Etten as a song being about a flippant response to self-destruction. I hear that, but this song means more to me.

When I listen to it and read the lyrics, it reminds me so much of what it feels like to identify as a woman and outwardly appear as a woman but also what occurs when you act outside the societal norms and expectations of being a woman– being quiet and good and patient. Not asking for what you need. No bodily functions. Etc.

There is a constant sense of “being in trouble” if you act outside of this expectation or norm or, god forbid, ask for what you need or express how you feel earnestly. In fact, people often react even more angry towards women when women show (maybe even a rare) instances of assertiveness, boundary setting, or speaking up for yourself or even the facts. I am sadly speaking from experience on this one and have one too many stories where I felt threatened (physically and beyond) for standing up for myself or even saying “no”. However, it is more normal to be gaslit or talked back into being quiet in real life instances.

Obviously these gendered issues aren’t just a problem for women. All genders suffer when we are bound by these expectations. This line in particular though really resonated with me in terms of being a woman:

I washed your dishes, but I shit in your bathroom

Sharon Van Etten, “Every Time the Sun Comes Up”

I’ve included a live version above because if an artist can do their songs justice in a live setting, usually the experience is a bit more touching. I have also included the music video below because it’s a really charming music video featuring a man transforming himself into a sort of a Svengoolie type character (I guess; there may be some other cultural reference I am not picking up on; let me know if that is the case!).