Hillary Frank, Host of “The Longest Shortest Time”

Parenting is hard. The good news is, we’re not alone. Other people have tough times and cry about it, we can also laugh about the tough times of the past. Pre-baby I was all about music. I used Nicki Minaj’s “Dungeon Dragon” to practice my birthing breathing.

Somewhere along the way, podcasts became my lifeline. Toward the end of my pregnancy, I began listening to “The Longest Shortest Time.” It started off slow, then turned in to an obsessive binge. Hearing stories from so many different moms, and some dads, made me feel less alone and better prepared for motherhood. It was like listening in on a conversation between friends who get you. Since many of my friends were far away, the comfort of hearing others chat felt nice. It also made me feel better prepared for whatever motherhood threw my way.

Here’s a round up of the best parenting podcasts to make you laugh, cry, and just think about all that parenthood can be:

The Longest Shortest Time

Parenting is the longest shortest time. Some days it feels like we won’t make it but this show makes you pause to appreciate the small moments and the big milestones we will face as parents. This podcast is inclusive and wonderful. Episodes include postpartum depression, getting pregnant while trans, raising a child of color as a white woman, a two-part series on boobs, and even episodes where men try out different aspects of pregnancy — “A Childless Man Gets a C-Section.” This podcast has meant so much to me during motherhood. It makes me think about and appreciate everything that has built me up to the mother I am–including this podcast. I am so thankful to have this lifeline and look forward to listening each week.

Favorite Episodes:

Episode 48: The Parents’ Guide to Doing It

Episode 60: The Accidental Gay Parents

How to be a Girl 

This podcast is hosted by the mother of a transgender child who is now 7 years old. She uses the pseudonym, Marlo Mack, because she allows her daughter space to come out to who she would like when she is ready. When her daughter was 3 years old, she told her mom that something went wrong in her tummy and she was meant to be a girl, not a boy. At first, Marlo thought this was just a child saying something silly, but her daughter was drawn to dresses and “girly” clothing. She began the podcast to ponder what it really means to be a girl and to normalize and share the experience of being the mom of a transgender child.

She is honest about the struggles of having to out her daughter before she has playdates and grieving the loss of the son she thought she had. What I love so much about this podcast is Marlo Mack exploring what it means to let your child be completely who they are. She expresses so eloquently that we can mold our children to be kind hearted, wonderful people, but our children are going to turn in to exactly who they were meant to be and we need to embrace and encourage this.

Favorite Episodes:

Episode 6: Looking for Love

Episode 21: How to be a Dad

Go ‘Head Mama

Listen in on the conversations between long distance besties, Danielle and Kate. Danielle lives in the UK, while Kate lives in San Francisco. They are funny, honest, and informative about all aspects of motherhood. They discuss motherhood in real time as both have toddlers and Danielle welcomed her second baby while Kate is in the midst of her second pregnancy. From breastfeeding, to being a working mom and working from home while being with your child, to the struggles of breastfeeding being so real–Danielle and Kate just get it. I love listening in on their journeys in motherhood as I laugh along and sometimes yell, “YES!” out loud in my car.

Favorite Episodes:

Episode 22: Midwife Knows Best

Episode 7: The United States Does Not Care About Mothers

One Bad Mother 

A podcast that ponders hilarious questions such as, do I have to like my kids friends? The hosts, Biz Ellis and Theresa Thorn, get real about their own experiences parenting and keep it light. I kind of want them to be my new best mom friends. They bring other rad moms on the show to weigh in on all the parental issues we face and cover…pretty much everything. They weigh in on homework, toddlerhood, postpartum peeing, how kids express themselves through their dress, and even some episodes where they decided not to talk about kids. We all need a break right?

Favorite Episodes:

Episode 164: Who Are We to Other People’s Kids? Plus Aya De Leon on Talking With Our Kids About Race and Activism

Episode 122: You Don’t Craft? Plus Guest Jessica Shortall

Father Time

Jamie Kaler shares the hilariously wonderful dads’ perspective on parenthood. His first ever guest was Jason Alexander, so you know this is a good one! So many podcasts (like the ones on this list) share the mother’s tales, but we need the dads’ perspectives too! Dads have a way of turning the things that might drive us crazy in to funny, charming, parenting hiccups. I don’t know about you, but I need that perspective shift and I’m thankful to get it through Father Time.

Favorite Episodes:

Episode 1: Jason Alexander

Episode 3: Richard Marx


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here