Free shipping on orders over $50


Learn about, laugh about, and yes, maybe even cry about adolescence... theirs and ours.

Dr. Cara Natterson and Vanessa Kroll Bennett dish out scientific research, parenting strategies, and hilarious stories to help guide the adults who are raising kids through puberty. Each episode takes on one piece of this messy journey, landing on practical, actionable advice.

Subscribe's free and priceless!

NOW WHAT?! Oversharing podcast
A listener wrote in asking for help balancing how to have open conversations with teaching privacy, especially when a subject is complicated or charged. How can we talk to kids about certain topics and ask them not to broadcast the conversation to everyone they know without conferring shame?
Starter Conversations About Porn
Porn is everywhere, which is why kids are exposed – either accidentally or on purpose. It’s on all of us to have clear, calm conversations with them, which is why this episode offers several different ways in with kids of all ages.
NOW WHAT?! Is this early puberty?
We are adding a second episode each week inspired by listener questions called: WHAT NOW?! where we answer questions and offer next steps to the wild array of challenges that crop up during the decade of puberty. This week’s question: Is my 5-year old in puberty?
How Kids Thrive with Dr. Michele Borba
There isn’t one path to raising a thriving kids, but there is a special sauce to help tweens and teens get there. Educational psychologist and author of Thrivers, Michele Borba, unpacks the strategies that best support and encourage kids.
Taking the Stress out of Homework with Brian Platzer
Homework can be a massive source of conflict throughout the school years. Brian Platzer is an expert on how to minimize this: he’s a teacher, tutor and writer. His advice isn’t just realistic and actionable, it changes the dynamic for good!
The Emotional Whiplash of Launching a Kid
Last week, we dropped our kids off at college. This week, we share the excitement, grief, pride, terror, and all of the other emotions that went along with it. It was a journey, from crying on airplanes to remembering there are siblings still left at home.
Cara and Vanessa Interview Their Kids
Our two oldest children, now in college, get raw (and funny!) as they reflect back on conversations about puberty, telling us where we got it right and all the ways we didn’t.
If Only There Were a Student Health Handbook…
As kids head back to school, we chat with Dr. Jill Grimes, author of The Ultimate College Student Health Handbook who offers pearls for kids of all ages and the adults who love them.
Hook-Up Culture from Those Living In It
An honest conversation with our interns about hook-up culture, situationships and friends with benefits. Yes, today’s sexual culture is just as confusing as it sounds.
Treating Acne with the Microbiome
This episode will blow your mind. Dr. Yug Varma, microbiologist and entrepreneur, takes us on a journey through the wondrous microbiome of the skin, unmasking the causes of acne and offering up a completely new approach to treatment.
Beginner Conversations about Consent
Consent conversations can – and should – start early. So early that they begin around topics that have absolutely nothing to do with sex. Learn how to apply the lessons of consent to a bunch of different topics in kids’ lives and start getting comfortable with a conversation that will happen many different times in many different ways.
Ungendering Body Image
Struggles with body image affects people of all genders and all ages. Psychologist and author Charlotte Markey talks us through all of it, debunking myths and offering guidance for building positive body image.
How to Parent without Judgment
Judging ourselves, judging other parents, judging our partners and judging our kids… none of these feels good, and all clog lines of communication. But this is a really tough habit to kick. The first step is owning our judgment, so in this episode we share a bunch of our own parenting fails and then (try to) forgive ourselves.
Giving Parents A Compass
Guiding kids through the adolescent years requires finding true north, a trusted point in the distance during the chaos. So we interviewed education consultants and co-authors of The Parent Compass to get guidance on how to support kids and get out of their way.
First Loves and Desires
We get lots of questions about young love – and lust. It’s an enormous topic incorporating everything from first relationships to hook ups; from crushes to being crushed. This episode explores how to open conversations with kids on all of these fronts while managing our own feelings and behavior on the sidelines.
Life Hacks for the Sleep Deprived Teen
Spoiler alert: the only life hack for sleep deprivation is… more sleep! Lisa Lewis is the journalist who helped pass California’s new later school-start time law, all in an effort to prioritize teen sleep. This episode makes you look at sleep needs – for our kids and us, too – in a whole new light.
All about breast development: when they grow, why they can be painful or lumpy (or both), and how to manage this shifting landscape.
Teens and the Law with Jonathan Cristall, Esq.
There’s a lot about the law that is assumed but never clearly discussed with kids. We cover a ton of it – from cell phone rights to the rules around how to act when you’re pulled over by the cops to legal details around sexual consent – in conversation with City of Los Angeles prosecutor Jonathan Cristall.
Party Culture with Dolly Klock, MD
Dr. Dolly Klock, a family medicine physician and the founder of Adolessons, has become a go-to resource on the evolving party scene. In this episode, she walks us through what’s accessible to kids today, how drugs and alcohol have changed, and what everyone needs to know about new risks.
Summer Prep for All Ages – From Sunscreen to Condoms
Getting kids ready for summer outings, camps, and other adventures means more than just name tags and bug spray. This episode spans the various ways we prepare tweens and teens for all of the physical, emotional and logistical needs of the season.
The Power of Showing Up With Dr. Tina Payne Bryson
Tina Bryson provides a masterclass in the science of why it’s so important to show up for kids and how we can do it, even imperfectly.
The Battle Over How Kids Present Themselves
Everything from the clothes kids wear to their desire for makeup, piercings, tattoos, certain hairstyles and hair colors can generate stress, conflict, and drama at home. We explore why different generations see self-expression differently and how to communicate our way through it.
Advice from Famous Sex Educator Shafia Zaloom
Shafia Zaloom, author of Sex, Teens and Everything in Between, joins us for an eye-opening and reassuring conversation about teen sexuality, communication and vulnerability.
How to Negotiate with Your Kid
There is an endless list of points of contention between adults and tweens + teens: curfew, allowance, screen time, piercings…and on and on. This episode explores how to come up with rules and limits on these issues while making them palatable to our kids, in other words, making our rules seem like their idea.
Puberty Meets Perimenopause with Monica Corcoran Harel
The brilliant and hilarious Monica Corcoran Harel, writer and founder of Pretty Ripe, paints the picture of what her household looks like as her daughter experiences puberty and she enters perimenopause, or what she calls “puberty in reverse.”
Hair, Hair Everywhere
Everything you ever wanted to know about when and where hair grows as kids’ bodies change, the social and emotional implications of sprouting on different parts of the body, and how to handle conversations about keeping vs. getting rid of all this new hair.
When Puberty Doesn't Go As Expected
This special episode with Washington Post columnist Meghan Leahy and her daughter, Sophia Rasevic, walks through a family’s atypical puberty journey. Though Meghan is a parenting expert, in this episode she wears her “mom hat'' as she and Sophia share the experience of Sophia’s diagnosis with a condition that dramatically impacted her journey through puberty.
What Teens Need to Know About Sex
Part 3 of a 3-part series: What do kids need to know about sex and when? In this episode, we focus on conversations about sex with teens in high school and beyond. The continuation of this ongoing conversation about what they - and you - need to know about talking through these very personal topics.
Talking to Tweens About Sex
What do kids need to know about sex and when? This is the second in a 3-part series answering that question. In this episode, we focus on conversations with kids from 5th grade through the end of middle school, a time when most kids enter and progress through puberty and when they’re getting health/sex education classes in school.
What School Aged Kids Need to Know About Sex
What do kids need to know about sex and when? This is the first in a 3-part series answering that question. In this episode, we focus on conversations with kids from Kindergarten through the start of middle school. We’ll help you build a foundation of anatomically correct vocabulary, consent, and privacy, offering age-appropriate and inclusive language.
Goodbye to Anxiety with Dr. Terri Bacow
Anxiety is a humongous topic of conversation these days, especially increasing rates among kids. Dr. Terri Bacow, author of Goodbye Anxiety, helps sort through what falls into this category, points to the best resources for help, and offers anxiety-management tools for kids and the adults who love them.
From the Horse's Mouth: Older Teens Give Puberty Advice
Sometimes, the very best advice comes from a person who’s just out the other end of an experience. Listen in as our interns give the inside scoop on what adolescents need to know and how that information is best delivered.
Menstrual Equity with Melissa Berton of The Pad Project
In honor of International Women’s Day, we are joined by Melissa Berton, co-founder of The Pad Project and Oscar winning producer of Period. End of Sentence. Barriers to safe menstruation exist across the US and around the world, caused by financial, cultural and hygienic constraints. This eye-opening episode provides a window into the challenge faced by so many.
Jessica Yellin on How to Talk to Teens About War
Jessica Yellin, award winning journalist and creator of #NewsNotNoise, talks about where to get the best news and how to use history to contextualize what we’re seeing in Ukraine at this moment. Her social media-based platform offers teens (and adults!) a view of the news that values fact over fear mongering.
It's Sex Ed Season in America
What do schools cover - and what don’t they - in the famous Sex Ed curriculum? Turns out, there are lots of guidelines, but little consistency from school to school. We’re taking a deep dive into what kids are *supposed* to be learning, why they might not get that education, and the holes that parents/trusted adults need to fill at home.
Rachel Simmons on Being Honest and Authentic with Kids
Rachel Simmons, New York Times bestselling author of The Curse of the Good Girl, Odd Girl Out, and Enough As She Is, applies her years of research and work with adolescents to offer guideposts for empathetically raising kids. This conversation explores practical ways to support our tweens and teens with authenticity.
The Importance of Air (Down There and Everywhere)
As bodies grow, new smells emerge from head to toe, hair sprouts in dark, moist places, and both sweat and fluid begin to flow. To solve for odors, rashes and infections, there is a free remedy: AIR. This episode is all about how we can help our kids use air to keep their bodies healthy.
Podcast iFrame Code
Mallika Chopra on Adolescent Self-Reflection
Meditation and self-reflection are practices everyone - including kids - can use to manage life’s stresses. In this unique episode, in addition to describing how breathing exercises and meditation impact the brain, Mallika leads us through a few very short ones. Listen… relax… and carry these tools into your daily life.
The Do-Over (AKA The Best Parenting Trip Ever)
A humongous part of raising tweens and teens is messing up. We all make rules but then change our minds; give incorrect information; or simply lose our cool for no good reason. Here’s a dirty little secret: we can always take a do-over. This episode is about the anatomy of a do-over using painfully ridiculous examples from our own lives.
Unicorn Space for All with Eve Rodsky
Most parents say they just want their kids to be happy. What if happiness comes when we find our “Unicorn Space” – a place at the intersection of purpose and meaning? In our conversation with Eve Rodsky, author of Unicorn Space and New York Times bestseller Fair Play, we explore how our expectations of our adolescents, our communication styles and willingness to share our own vulnerabilities can help our tweens + teens find their Unicorn Space.
The Brave NewWorld of Period Products
Everything you ever wanted to know about period products and were afraid to ask, from the old standby pads and tampons to brand new disruptors like menstrual cups and period underwear. This entertaining and informative tutorial walks through the many ways menstruators can catch their flow.
The Grandparent Episode with Henry + Zoe Winkler
Our episode with Henry + Zoe Winkler is a father/daughter master class on how grandparents play loving, supportive and epicenter-of-fun roles in their grandchildren’s lives. If we’re lucky, children have grandparents who can act as an extra set of trusted adults, helping them navigate the twists and turns of childhood. But every parent knows that when it comes to grandparents, the rules tend to get thrown out the window - cake for breakfast anyone? We laughed and cried during this inspirational conversation with a very special family… we think you will, too.
Body Positivity in Puberty with Zoe Bisbing of The Full Bloom Project
In this episode we tackle the complex challenges in trying to achieve body positivity in puberty with Zoe Bisbing, psychotherapist and co-founder of The Full Bloom Project, a body positive parenting resource. Zoe offers a thoughtful approach to all of the fraught topics around weight and body image during adolescence, as well as guidelines - and tremendous wisdom - for creating a body positive home.
Pediatrician Kelly Fradin on Talking to Younger Kids about their Bodies
For any parent wondering how to talk to younger kids about their bodies, Kelly Fradin (AKA) @adviceigivemyfriends is an amazing resource. Conversations about changing bodies really should start before bodies morph - Kelly walks through what to say when and how. Plus, in this episode you’ll get a peek into the talks pediatricians have with tweens and teens when they kick parents out of the exam room.
Care and Keeping with the Original Author Valorie Shaefer
We sit down with the original author of The Cara and Keeping of You, Valorie Schaefer, who describes in technicolor how the first volume of The Care and Keeping of You came to be and her personal journey writing a cult classic book about puberty.
All About Acne
One of the most common questions - and worries - about puberty: zits. Why do we get them? Where? When? And what can be done? Get everything you need to know about acne, backne, buttne, and more…
Busting Adolescent Myths with Dr. Nina Shapiro
Does eating oily food give you acne? Is breakfast the most important meal? Do we really need to drink eight glasses of water a day? Dr. Nina Shapiro, pediatric otolaryngologist, joins us to bust some adolescent myths and discuss her new book Ultimate Kids' Guide to Being Super Healthy, a terrific guide for helping kids understand the science behind why adults make the rules they do.
When You Didn't Grow Up Talking About IT with Mary Pat Draddy, LMSW
How do you talk to your kids about complicated things when you didn’t grow up in a home that did? Our guest this week is Mary Pat Draddy, LMSW and Dynamo Director of Workshops, with her journey as someone who didn’t grow up talking about puberty and now makes her profession as someone who does. Mary Pat shares how she filled her information gap as an adult and how she’s chosen to raise her own kids.
Adolescents Don't Have to be Assholes with Melinda Wenner Moyer
We want to raise our kids to be good people, but easier said than done, right? Science journalist Melinda Wenner Moyer and author of “How to Raise Kids Who Aren’t Assholes” joins us on this episode to tackle big topics like lying, sexism and consent.
The Science of Late Bloomers
There’s a timeline for puberty - when it starts and how fast it proceeds - which means that there’s also “early” and “late.” Layered on top is the relativity of puberty: when everyone else is going through it (or not), the person who’s not (or is!) feels out of sync. This episode explores the science behind the timing of puberty and how adults - both parents and doctors - might approach a late bloomer.
Dr. Louise Greenspan on Puberty's Dramatic Shift: Earlier but Not Faster
Over the past two decades, puberty has crept up earlier and earlier, redefining what it means to be “early” or “late.” But why? Is it the food we’re eating? The water we’re drinking? The cosmetics we use? The medications we take? Is it caused by stress? Or screens? If we just had a culprit, we could fix this. Pediatric endocrinologist Dr. Louise Greenspan, author of the lauded book The New Puberty, has the answers.

NOTE: This is one of our longer episodes, but it’s so packed with information and insights, we didn’t want to cut it down. So listen in one sitting or break it up into smaller bits – you won’t regret listening all the way through!
Hygiene... or Lack Thereof
For so many adults, addressing kids’ hygiene -- keeping their bodies clean, smells at bay, zits minimal, and all the rest -- feels really tricky. We never want to shame kids, but we all want them to learn how to take care of themselves. So what topics need covering? And what’s the best way to say what we think they need to hear? This week’s episode is all about hygiene…or lack thereof.
Having the TALKs... by Personality Type
Having the Personality Type Oct 19, 2021 How we talk to our kids about complex topics like puberty and sex depends both on our kids’ personalities are ours, too. There is no one-size-fits-all on how to have these tricky conversations. In this episode, Vanessa and Cara break down the cast of characters in both the kid roles and the adult roles, offering up guidance for having these talks in our families while making room for the different temperaments involved.
The Blessings of Wendy Mogel
Wendy Mogel, clinical psychologist and New York Times bestselling author, discusses raising kids through adolescence, a time of the “greatest anguish and the greatest ecstasy.” With humor and honesty, Wendy advises us to be “emotional archaeologists” with the kids we love and learning to “keep quiet, keep captivated and keep respectful” when navigating this tricky time as caregivers.
Andrew Goldberg on Big Mouth and Being A World Famous Early Bloomer!
Andrew Goldberg, co-creator of Big Mouth, the hit Netflix animated series about puberty, and world famous early bloomer, joins us in conversation about what it felt like to be the first of his friends to hit puberty. Andrew shares his experiences from those fraught years, what was talked about and what wasn’t, and he discusses how he and his wife are choosing to raise their own children based on what their adolescent experiences were. This is a heartfelt episode that we think teens in the same boat would appreciate, but there is some language that may not be welcome in all homes so please listen first before sharing with your teen.
Someone Has to Go First... The Early Bloomers
There isn’t ONE time to start puberty or end puberty and someone has to go first. In this episode, Cara explains the science behind early puberty and we explore the social and emotional impact of being an early bloomer. Plus you get to learn what an orchidometer is! This is a great episode to listen to with your kids.
Dr. Hina Talib with a DEEP DIVE on Periods
Dr. Hina Talib, adolescent medicine specialist and host of the popular @teenhealthdoc on Instagram, joins us for a deep dive on periods. We discuss menstruation as a vital sign, what’s considered normal for teen menstruation and what’s not, when to worry and when to seek advice from medical providers. We’ll cover everything from mittelschmerz (WHAT?!!!) to endometriosis, so tune in for accessible expert advice on all things teens and periods!
Erections & Nocturnal Emissions (AKA Boners & Wet Dreams)
Erections and nocturnal emissions – AKA boners and wet dreams – are big pieces of puberty that often go unmentioned unless they’re punchlines in a joke. Which is a big conversational miss, because these topics can cause unnecessary confusion, shame, worry, or awkwardness. In this episode, we break down the science behind boners and wet dreams (and yes, we use the language that kids use) and then bring in a special guest to offer practical ways to help males manage these unexpected and uncontrollable experiences in puberty.
Dr. Lisa Damour on Return to School Resilience
Dr. Lisa Damour, New York Times bestselling author, columnist and co-host of the Ask Lisa Podcast, joins us for a back-to-school episode on lessons learned from the previous two school years under Covid. This episode explores the adaptability, emotional honesty and family rituals we developed and how we can use them in constructive ways to create new models for parenting as we move forward.
Dr. Molly Colvin on the "Consistently Inconsistent" Adolescent Brain
Dr. Molly Colvin helps us understand the upsides and the downsides of the adolescent brain, in and out of pandemic. Her adage that tween and teen brains are “consistently inconsistent” provides critical insights for adults navigating the ways to communicate with and support the adolescents for whom we are caring. Dr. Colvin’s offers guidance for when we should push their “growth edge” and when we should accept that this is how things are going to be for a while...
The Path through Puberty: Order of Operations
The word “puberty” means the process of sexual maturation - by the end of puberty, a person has the ability to reproduce. But the path through puberty is not a stepwise ladder where one part of the body changes, then another, then another. Rather, it’s a winding path, a checklist of physiological shifts that happen in no particular order. This episode walks through the details of what happens to the body during puberty, with an emphasis on the fact that while the list of changes is fairly universal, their sequence is not at all. The body’s going to do what the body’s going to do when it feels like doing it.
Roger Bennett on his English Adolescence
Roger Bennett, author of #1 the New York Times bestseller (Re)Born in the USA and co-host of the popular Men in Blazers podcast, shares the hilarious and painful experiences of his English adolescence of the 1970’s & 1980’s. He discusses what passed as sex-ed at that time, what it felt like to be a (very) late bloomer and when was the moment everything changed. This episode is intended for people above the age of 14.
Leaving our Baggage at the Door
One of the hardest things about raising kids through puberty is leaving our own baggage at the door. Our past experiences are seared into our brains and we’re so tempted to talk about them, but so often, our kids don’t want to hear about them. We need to let their puberty be their puberty. This episode is about why it is critical that we leave our puberty baggage at the door and how we can do that (most of the time…)
Dr. Aliza Pressman on Parenting the Emotional Rollercoaster of Puberty
Dr. Aliza Pressman, host of the Raising Good Humans Podcast, joins us to discuss the ways we can respond to the emotional ups and downs of parenting kids in puberty. Aliza’s practical and actionable advice boils down to this: what’s going on for our kids and how can we meet them in a kind and constructive way? This episode looks at a few common scenarios we face when raising adolescents and walks us through different options for handling those tricky moments.
When is my Daughter Going to Get her Period?!
The number one puberty question we get asked is: when is my daughter going to get her period?!!! And while no one can say for certain, this episode will cover what are red herrings and what are true signs that her period is coming. Listen in for some practical information as well as Cara and Vanessa’s own first period stories.
Nick Kroll on Being Late to the Puberty Party
Nick Kroll, comedian, actor and Big Mouth creator, sits down with Vanessa Kroll Bennett (his sister) and Dr. Cara Natterson for an honest conversation about what life was like as someone late to the puberty party. The episode is not quite as hilarious (or dirty) as Big Mouth but just as authentic. Nick offers a window into how being a late bloomer affected him in good and hard ways throughout the course of his life.
Why Does Talking About Puberty Even Matter?!!!
In the very first episode of The Puberty Podcast, Dr. Cara Natterson and Vanessa Kroll Bennett make the case for why talking to kids about puberty matters. It boils down to this: if we want to keep kids healthy and safe, we need to talk to them about puberty (but you should still listen to the episode!)
Pilot episode
THE PUBERTY PODCAST weaves together science, parenting advice, and painfully funny stories to help guide adults who are raising kids through puberty. Join Dr. Cara Natterson and Vanessa Kroll Bennett - puberty experts in the midst of parenting their own tweens and teens - for the WHAT and the HOW of getting through adolescence.