I am an AuDHD, disabled, trans, and queer creative, which means I am in an awful lot of communities and thus there is an awful lot that I want to learn about more. One thing I have only learnt about this year, is that there is an entire month dedicated to Disability Pride –
stemming from a day long celebration in Boston 1990, since becoming an international month-long event!
Whilst Pride Month is now widely covered and celebrated, Disability Pride doesn’t get anywhere near the attention and support it deserves (yet). So, for those of you interested in hearing from disabled creatives about their experiences (either to learn more, support friends or family, or those like me that just crave representation), I’ve compiled a list of some disabled podcasts I think you should be listening to beyond Disability Pride Month. There are definitely more that I haven’t discovered yet so either comment your favourites, or get in touch with me with recommendations!
Equal Too: Achieving Disability Equality
Hosted by Sophie Morgan (one of the first female wheelchair-user television hosts in the world) and produced by the creators of double Emmy Award winning documentary Rising Phoenix, this six-part series explores the Paralympic Movement and activism to transform the world for those that do – and do not – have a disability. Talking to informed professionals, and those with a large platform, this podcast explores the reality of being disabled in modern day. Not only is this made by disabled creators, for disabled people, they have also made it as accessible as possible – a small thing that many seem to forget about. A transcript is available for each episode, along with captioned video recording and BSL signed versions. There are episodes on everything you might be interested in: the Paralympics itself; the rights of disabled people and how they are changing; the fashion and film industries. My personal favourite episode looked at how inaccessible the modern world has been built. Listen on your podcast app >>
The Neurodivergent Woman
Disability is more than just wheelchairs and walking sticks. Many neurodivergent (ND) people class themselves as disabled (myself included) and many also have co-concurrent disabilities and chronic illnesses such as Fibromyalgia, M.E, epilepsy, or intellectual disabilities. The Neurodivergent Woman is perfect for those that identify as women, and those that want to support the ND women in their lives more. It explores many aspects, such as the fact that ADHD and autism are substantially underdiagnosed in women (the diagnostic criteria was designed around men) and the lack of support and understanding for women. It’s hosted by clinical psychologist Monique Mitchelson and clinical neuropsychologist Michelle Livock, both of whom identify as neurodivergent themselves. They bring their own experiences and their medical understanding, but they also interview countless guests to educate and inspire their audience to think differently about themselves and the world around them. Listen on your podcast app >>
Chronic Illness And Me
Of the over-26-million people in the UK, around 10 million have two or more chronic illnesses or Long Term Conditions. With such a substantial amount of people, you’d think that there would be more open conversations about this. Luckily, Holly (@StomaBabe) hosts a gloriously honest podcast about life as a chronically ill person, and interviews other social media influencers about their experiences. From ‘Disability and Dating’ and ‘Pregnancy with a Stoma’ to specific disabilities like Crohn’s, blindness, cancer and colitis, there is something
for everyone to learn. Even as a chronically ill person myself, I know nothing about so many other illnesses but this podcast gives you the chance to learn more with all the raw details and understand the impacts of society on disabled people. Listen on your podcast app >>
Do you like good vibes? I know I do. This podcast is simply that. It is planned and presented by DJ’s and Radio presenters with learning disabilities and includes spoken word poems exclusively by artists with learning disabilities, along with radio diaries about the challenges and triumphs of daily lives, talks on accessibility, and professionals discussing employment and skills. There’s phenomenal sound design, great audio quality (something I personally struggle with when it comes to listening to podcasts) fascinating facts, and some amazing
story telling. Not only is this a banging show as is, it also won recognition for its quality with an Audio Production Award last year! So strap in and listen to Joel, Jason and Fran’s hilarious banter on this glorious 30 minute bitesize show, with over 120 episodes. Listen on your podcast app >>
The Queer Podcast
Okay, so this is a bit of a curve ball, but there is a huge intersection between queer and disabled people. The episode ‘Queer And Disabled ft. Nu’ explores this perfectly, and how multiple identities outside the ‘norm’ can cause issues for people getting through daily life. Host Ashish Sawhny learns with the audience as he interviews Nu about their trans experience. It is so refreshing to hear from queer, trans, disabled activists talking about their experience, and the ways that we can be ‘too’ queer for disabled spaces and ‘too’ disabled for queer spaces. Listener discretion is advised – the episode goes into porn and sexualisation of disabled people – but we are so often infantilised, and so hearing ‘adult’ themes is something we rarely get. Plus, both host and guest go into the social context surrounding their Indian heritage, providing some fascinating food for thought for the audience! Listen on your podcast app >>
Mimi is a poet and playwright, exploring autism, queerness and disability through their work. They run QueerOutLoud, the South Wests Queer Creatives Network, and have spent 2023 as Young City Laureate, helping nurture the diverse voices in Plymouth’s poetry scene. Follow them on socials @MimiJMedia and @QueerOutLoud.