15 Podcasts for parents
Over the last few years, there has been an explosion in the popularity of podcasts. Ever since the world became obsessed with the true crime investigation story told in season one of Serial (a spin-off of the most popular podcast of all time, This American Life), podcasts have sprung up on every imaginable topic, from entrepreneurship to engineering, and from pop culture to parenting. This is great news for parents — particularly those that don’t have a lot of time and would like to digest news, stories and comedy segments in 30- or 60-minute increments. We’ve put together a list of podcasts that we think parents will love… that don’t all deal with parenting!
For all parents
Longest Shortest Time: Host Hillary Frank started this podcast when she was a brand new mom who was struggling to connect and find herself. While the initial episodes focus on that first year of life as a parent, the most recent seasons feature stories on unique parenting experiences and situations. Check out the Accidental Gay Parents episodes and The Parent’s Guide to Doing It.
Mom and Dad are Fighting: Two Slate editors discuss and debate the latest parenting news, articles and techniques with guest speakers. The chemistry and banter between the hosts is great and a lot of their personal content relates to struggles with raising kids when both parents work outside the home. I constantly find myself laughing at Dan’s jokes and wincing at Allison’s epic fails, which always make me feel slightly better about my own parenting skills.
Spawned: Hosted by the women who brought you Cool Moms Picks, this podcast covers a wide range of relevant parenting topics in a real-life, non-judgmental, and hilarious manner. Recent topics include how to talk to your kids about the election, how to embarrass your tweens for life, making friends after kids, Pinterest syndrome, and summer camp. Plus, there’s always a great “cool mom pick” at the end of every episode.
For the hip mom
Lady Gang: We are loving this celebrity-based podcast hosted by Keltie Knight, Jac Vanek, and Becca Tobin. Each episode features a different celebrity guest for hilarious chatter about Hollywood, personal lives and being a woman. Check out the episodes with new mom Haylie Duff and the one with sex therapist, Dr. Emily Morse.
One Bad Mother: One of our favorite parenting podcasts that hilariously shows that motherhood isn’t as natural or magical as it may appear. Episodes deal with real life topics and the hosts aren’t afraid to share their most embarrassing moments and epic fails. This podcast will have you laughing more and judging less.
Pop Culture Happy Hour: The perfect podcast for the parent that wants to stay up-to-date on the latest books, movies, TV shows, comedy, podcasts, news, celebrity gossip, music, and everything else. Recent episodes cover everything from Beyonce to Bourne and Prince to Pokemon.
For the armchair detective
Unsolved Murders: True Crime Stories: This is the latest in the recent spur of true crime podcasts following the success of Serial. This podcast is part cold case examination and part audiobook with a cast of characters, plot twists, and haunting storytelling. Each cold case remains unsolved, but they attempt to explore all the real case facts, follow the clues and identify the most likely culprit.
Someone Knows Something: Host David Ridgen goes back to his hometown of Arnprior (Ontario Canada) to re-investigate the 1972 disappearance of 5-year-old Adrien McNaughton, who vanished while on a family fishing trip. Despite an intensive search and investigation, no sign of Adrien was ever found and no clue as to what happened has been uncovered in the 40 years since the disappearance. But surely, someone somewhere knows something…
My Favorite Murder: The surprising breakout hit of the summer, this podcast will shock you, make you squirm and fall in love with true crime all at the same time. Hosted by two girlfriends who share a mutual fascination with murder and unsolved mysteries, each episode discusses the grizzly details of a case with awe, fascination and humor that will leave you wanting more. It’s an unusual spin on a dark topic, which the hosts claim is their way of dealing with their own fears and anxiety over issues like rape, murder and kidnapping. I realize this sounds totally creepy and crazy, but trust me, it’s great.
For the geeky parent
Stuff Mom Never Told You: From the people who brought you Stuff You Should Know, Stuff to Blow Your Mind and Stuff You Missed in History Class (all of which are great, by the way), this podcast specifically hits on topics relevant to women and discusses in from every imaginable angle. Topics include boobs, libidos, lesbians, spray tans, feminism, babysitting, wrinkles, and infertility.
Science Vs.: The latest podcast from Gimlet Media (makers of Reply All and StartUp, two other favorites), this podcast takes a close look at some of the most controversial topics today (attachment parenting, gun control, fracking) and pits the facts against everything else. Hosted by science journalist Wendy Zukerman, this podcast will make you question what you think you know about these fascinating topics.
More Perfect: From the creators of Radiolab, this spin-off dives into the relatively unknown realm of the United States Supreme Court. The podcast attempts to explain how the cases deliberated inside the hallowed halls affect our lives far away from the bench. We get a glimpse into the lives behind the justices, their relationships with each other and how their personal backgrounds have affected the outcomes of the most important cases in legal history.
For the busy/working mom
The Tim Ferriss Show: Each week, host Tim Ferriss, author of the 4-Hour Work Week, interviews people at the top of their field/industry and deconstructs the discussion to give you tips, tricks, advice and routines to help you excel in any field. From favorite books and morning routines to workouts and time-management tips, each episode focuses on finding manageable ways to increase your productivity and be more successful.
Working Motherhood: Dr. Portia Jackson hosts this daily inspirational podcast that gives you helpful tips, inspiring stories and lots of encouragement from successful working moms. Topics include: prioritizing your time, building a side business, outsourcing, creating gratitude, successful breastfeeding and setting incremental goals.
The Run-Up: For those that want to stay up-to-date on the political coverage in the final months running-up to the election, this brand new twice-weekly podcast by The New York Times political reporters have you covered. The episodes will cover the big stories and surprises, feature interviews with key players and analyze all the data you could ever want. (See also: NPR Politics Podcast)