Podcasts for parents

I love podcasts! Although I spend a lot of time meeting clients, chatting to them and photographing them, I also have lots of alone time while I’m editing. Before now, I’ve always listened to the radio while I do this but in the last year, podcasts have become more my thing. They’re perfect to keep me company while I go through images. It’s way better than having the TV on in the background, which distracts me too much and doesn’t allow me to me focus on the screen in front of me. Listening to a podcast is like earwigging on someone else’s conversation, but you can still jump any boring bits. The length is good too, rather than a half hour radio program, podcasts are often up to an hour long. Conversations or investigations can run across lots of episodes, meaning subjects are explored in more depth.

It strikes me that podcasts are perfect for new parents. If you feel you’re tethered to the sofa, feeding your newborn, or pushing the pram out and about to get baby to sleep, and podcast can keep you company. I thought I’d explore some podcasts that would be relevant to you as parents, so that you didn’t have to wade through the flood of frankly terrible content that’s out there. Here are my favourites.

Parenting podcasts

There are a lot of these about and some of them are painful to listen to. I’ve highlighted the ones that made me smile and nod when I heard them. Oddly, they’re pretty much all UK produced. I think it’s probably because they feel more relevant and seem to speak my language.

Happy Mum, Happy Baby
by Gi Fletcher

Giovanna Fletcher – author, blogger and vlogger – started this podcast in 2017, after she’d written her book of the same name. She chats with lots of well known names, most of them her friends, about being a parent, breast feeding, anxiety, miscarriage and lots more. I think Gi comes across really well, very down to earth and chatty with the people (there are a few men in there too) in each episode. This makes for some very frank discussions and often lots of giggling. I’m basically very nosey so sitting in on conversations is my favourite thing. As a result one of the best episodes for me is the one with her husband Tom Fletcher (from McFly), I love hearing them make each other laugh but they can still discuss difficult subjects like their miscarriage.
Episode worth listening to: interview with Tom Fletcher (see above)

First Time Dads
by Richard and Steve

This one’s from a different perspective. Two first time dads chat about what fatherhood’s like. Richard and Steve are really down to earth and discuss a huge range of really interesting issues.
Listening to this podcast won’t just give you an insight into a dad’s point of view. The people they chat to are often authors of both fiction and factual books, which really ticks boxes for me.
Episode worth listening to: Boy’s toys (a fascinating discussion about gendered toys)

Josie and Jonny are having a baby (with you)
by Josie Long and Jonny Donahoe

I know Josie Long’s voice very well from Radio 4. She always sounds like she has a smile on her face. Josie and Jonny are also both comedians and they’re having a baby together. It’s a pretty new podcast, starting this month (January 2019). They’re a really sweet couple and I love their vibe, which really comes across as they chat.
The premise is that Josie and Jonny are pregnant but absolutely clueless! Each week they chat to an expert and piece together how to raise a baby.
So far so good – keep checking in there for new episodes.

Not Another Mummy
by Alison Perry

Another chatty podcast (as I said, I love eavesdropping). Alison is well established as the writer of the Not Another Mummy Blog. She interviews women about motherhood and the issues surrounding. There’s some crossover of guests with the Happy Mum Happy Baby podcast so you’d be best to decide which format you like best and stick with that.
Episode worth listening to: Jo Tutchener-Sharp on facing death and being inspired by it.

Podcasts for little ears

There are also podcasts out there for children. Here are some fun ones to try out

Bedtime FM – bedtime stories for children. I’d say it’s aimed at preschoolers in particular. Episodes are around 11 minutes long but can be very short too, depending on the story.

CBeebies Radio – stories and fun adventures for toddlers and preschoolers. Each episode is around 10 minutes long, although they can be as short as 7 minutes or as long as half an hour.

Bedtime Explorers – relaxing meditation series narrated by Australian mindfulness coach. These podcasts are aimed to help your child wind down at bedtime, include breathing exercises and a special adventure to take your mind on.

My favourite podcasts

You might not fancy listening to something parenting related so here are a few of my favourite podcasts, each very different from the other.

Word of Mouth
by Radio 4

This is the podcast of this fascinating Radio 4 programme. Presented by Michael Rosen, each episode discusses a different theme around language. It could be how diseases are named, the language of politics, number words or the history of house names, Word of Mouth always teaches me something I didn’t know.

Where Should We Begin?
by Esther Perel

Esther Perel is a relationship therapist. This podcast allows us to listen in our those intimate, difficult conversations as she helps anonymous couples talk through the most profound parts of their lives. There are some very hard to listen to episodes but Esther’s style of gentle questioning is forgiving and full of warmth. I love her accent too!
Warning: Explicit content

Rule of Three
by Jason Hazeley and Joel Morris

Jason and Joel are long standing UK comedy writers – their credits include That Mitchell and Webb Look, Charlie Brooker’s Screenwipe and those adult themed Ladybird books that are everywhere now!
Each episode Jason and Joel chat with people who make comedy about their favourite piece of comedy. They talk about the workings of a good comedy, their own experiences and their guest’s work. Fascinating and hilarious. My favourite episodes are the ones with John Finnemore (my comedy crush) and Margaret Cabourn-Smith.
Warning: They get quite sweary when they get excited

I’d love to hear your thoughts on my choices and how and where you listen to your podcasts.
Happy listening!