No matter our relationship status, no one has gone through life always winning at the game of love. No one. We all laugh, we cry, we stumble and fumble—and sometimes we strike gold!
Fortunately, we live in the age of the internet, and the podcast emergence has unearthed an abundance of relationship commentators who totally get it. Be it advice, funny stories, or just straight-up sympathy, there is something for everyone.
As someone who has somehow adopted relationship analyzing as my favorite hobby (my single friends appreciate it; my husband, less so), I’ve rounded up some relationship podcasts that will make your next commute full of head nods, been theres, and amens!
Too often a breakup is an awkward patch we all try to brush over and hush up, but British writer and relationship coach Laura Yates dedicates an entire podcast to it. Digging into subjects that so many of our friends wish we’d proclaim dead, she reminds us about our exes, our heartache, and our consequent broken self-esteem, and how to move beyond them and grow. She also invites some pretty savvy guest speakers on the show to reveal their own stories on heartbreak—how it can move you, break you, and even motivate you to create a business. All I can say is: Um, where was this podcast 10 years ago?
On the brink of divorce several years ago, Melanie and Seth Studley learned how to weather the storm, and they’re not afraid to talk about their battle scars. The first season of Stronger Marriages primarily focuses on their all-too-familiar story, while expanding into a “collective of different voices” of other marriages. Stronger Marriages believes that “marriage can and should be mutually fulfilling, satisfying, healthy, and to be honest, mind-blowing.” That’s right. Move over #relationshipgoals, #mindblowingmarriage is the next hashtag. Even if your relationship isn’t a daily battle of the sexes, it’s worth a listen.
Listening to this podcast is like being privy to an intimate conversation between two girlfriends who are just trying to figure out how the world of romance works. Hosted by Ellen Huerta, founder of Mend (letsmend.com), an app that helps you through a breakup, and Sarah May Bates (YayWithMe.com) the podcaster behind Help Me Be Me and The Break-Up Album, they explore modern dating existential quandaries like: How to let go of a relationship that isn’t right, and Should you wait for your soul mate? And What to do when you’ve been ghosted?
It’s no secret that finances are often the most heated point of contention in relationships, as it's tangled into expectations, pride, and well, our hard-earned dollars. Derek and Carrie Olsen dive into this daunting subject, with podcasts featuring personal financial problems they had to face at the beginning of their marriage, the kinds of marital money conflicts they see again and again, the conversations you should have about money while you’re still dating, financial goals you should set together, and how to successfully co-budget (i.e., how to talk about it without being awkward and/or wanting to go off into an angry shopping spree of revenge).
Note: The last podcast on this was completed a year and a half ago, as they have since pivoted and started a new financial podcast (more money, less marriage).
Listening to Veronica Grant is kind of like listening to your zen best friend who loves yoga and tea, except, she’s made a career out of making women succeed and be happy. Formerly known as Date Yourself Radio, Grant has picked up and run with the old (and wise) adage, You should love yourself before you love someone else. “A podcast for smart women who feel like they have it all—except love,” she reminds us how important it us to lead with our gut, understand our boundaries, and learn how to achieve true vulnerability in order to thrive in romance. Even if you’re married, or in a serious relationship, Grant helps you quiet down and listen to that interior voice we’re usually too busy to hear.
With the byline as “Lessons Learned from a Lumpy Coach,” this is a funny and insightful, listen from the male perspective. Self-proclaimed “non-expert,” host Nick Pavlidis is equal parts self-deprecating and light-hearted, as he shares his own stories mixing it with interviews from real relationship experts, while often pairing it with his own down-to-earth insights. One of my favorites was that when he imagined the perfect husband for his daughter, he realized he was nothing like that ideal. Ouch. While mostly made for men, it’s still relatable for women and can remind us what typical marital problems look like from the other side.
I’ll admit it. When I first heard of this podcast, I was extremely skeptical. As someone who hates the mere idea of a personalized brand, I was prepared to be totally turned off by the very premise. Then I gave it a listen—and suddenly I was reminded of something that a very successful CEO once told me offhandedly during my first internship: “The older you get, you realize, everything is about relationships.” And business and romantic strategies, while they definitely have their differences, crossover much more than we think. Even if you don’t fancy yourself a businesswoman, host Jen Hecht has a very nuanced approach in dating, and she sees both love and business in a refreshingly rational yet still warm way. And let’s just say, metaphorically, her insights are often in the black.
Photo Credit: Hannah Busing