Podcasts are perfect for time-poor parents. Here are five of the best so you can learn about your baby’s development, absorb some parenting advice or just have a good old laugh, even when you’ve got your hands full.
Whether you're breastfeeding, trapped under a napping newborn, or pushing a buggy for miles trying to get your baby to sleep, listening to the right podcast can really help. Some are short and snappy, packed with practical information addressing particular parenting problems; others are laugh-out-loud funny, a great way to beat the boredom, and embrace the highs and lows of parenthood.
Here are five great parenting podcasts to get you started.
1. Best for Giggles
The Scummy Mummies are a straight-talking comedy duo of less-than-perfect mums who've been chatting about life, parenthood and everything that comes with it since 2013. Their hour-long shows ramble along – listening can feel like eavesdropping on two brilliant but slightly potty-mouthed mates chatting in the pub – but there are serious points raised, too, with autism and IVF just some of the topics covered. Guests have included Sandi Toksvig and David Baddiel, Guardian columnist Tim Dowling, and 'Queen of the Jungle' Stacey Solomon.
With titles like Encouraging Your Baby's Independent Play, Handling My Toddler's First Tantrum and Help Me Stop Yelling At My Child, parenting expert Janet Lansbury's short, sharp, problem-solving podcasts are a fantastic resource. Each episode is around the 15-minute mark and addresses a listener's parenting issue through the lens of Lansbury's respectful parenting philosophy. Start with the 3 RIE Basics episode (with more than 40k listeners to date) to test the waters and see if this calm, considered approach to parenting speaks to you.
If you're a fan of classic storytelling podcasts from the US, you'll love The Longest Shortest Time, by This American Life contributor and author, Hillary Frank. Called 'the parenting show for everyone', these hour-long stories cover everything from egg freezing and LGBT parenting, to raising kids with special needs and health issues. Presenter Hillary Frank unravels these amazing personal tales with a wonderful precision and clarity that'll keep you gripped and wanting more.
The Dirty Mother Pukka podcast, created by journalist, editor and vlogger Mother Pukka (Anna Whitehouse) and her partner Papa Pukka (Matt Farquharson) tackles grown-up questions about modern-day parenting with a witty, don't-hold-back approach. Topics like Return To Sender: The First Few Weeks and How To Keep The Love Alive Once The Baby's Arrived are put to panels of brutally honest mums and equally frank dads. The results are thought-provoking, occasionally stomach-churning and always giggle-inducing.
Beardy Dads aren't producing new content anymore, but frankly, who cares, when there's a year's worth of excellent material right here and ready to go. Join dads Roo and Nick as they meander through all the important topics that face new parents. Baby monitors, car seats, reusable nappies and buggy boards are just some of the items discussed by this happy, laid-back and, let's be honest, somewhat sleep-deprived duo.