If my daughter told me she was a boy, I don’t think I’d pick up a microphone and start recording. Of course, maybe my inclination to record would eventually get the better of me and I’d talk to my daughter on tape, but I certainly don’t think I’d make our chats public.
That said, I sure am glad Marlo Mack (not her real name) did.
Marlo is the producer of the podcast How to Be a Girl. Not too long after her then-son said things like “Mama, I’m a girl,” Marlo started recording. In due course, she started a blog. And then she turned the recordings into a podcast — first-person essays about motherhood and, as the tagline of her podcast puts it, “daily life with my transgender daughter.” (By the way, the podcast was featured on Transom about a year ago.)
The podcast is a touching look at motherhood, childhood, and gender. But, it’s more than that. I think Marlo is tackling one of the great mysteries of life: Who are we? And how do we become who we are? In that way, How To Be A Girl is not just for parents or parents of transgender children, it’s for everybody.
On this edition of HowSound, I feature the entire first episode of How to Be a Girl. Marlo talks about the impulse to pick up a microphone and some of the pitfalls of telling stories not everyone is ready to hear.
How to Be a Girl recently joined The Heard, a podcast collective. And, Marlo says, season two of How to Be a Girl will start very soon. In the meantime, be sure to listen to all the episodes of season one. You won’t be disappointed!