baby mama

or baby momma or baby mommy

[bey-bee mah-muh]

What does baby mama mean?


Your baby mama is the mother of your baby, whether you are in a relationship with her or not. Alas, the popular connotation of the term is that you're not in a relationship, often making baby mama disparaging or offensive, depending on the context.

Examples of baby mama


Examples of baby mama
Chiiiilleeee... I am not mature enough to date anybody with a baby mama. I just haven’t gotten to that point.
@_YourKYiNESS, October 2018
Via social media, Drake’s baby mama decided to flaunt her wealth, fantastic body, and troll the rapper by reminding him that she is very hot.
Dylan Fisher, Celebrity Insider, November 2018

Where does baby mama come from?

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The origin of the term baby mama is somewhat disputed. According to the linguist John McWhorter, the linguistic feature of dropping the possessive marker, s, (as in baby’s mama) comes from lower-class English dialects, particularly in historic Yorkshire, England.

Some poor people with these particular dialects were sent to work in the fields alongside African slaves in the US. These slaves, who were learning English, adopted the practice of dropping the possessive s, too. Their descendants, who speak African-American Vernacular English (AAVE) or simply Black English, carried on the practice, yielding an expression like baby mama for a baby’s mother.

Alternatively, linguist Peter L. Patrick claims use of the expression baby mama (and its counterpart baby daddy) comes from such Jamaican English forms as as baby madda and baby fadda. These expressions were then popularized in the US through reggae and dance music in the 1980s, particularly Linval Thompson’s 1981 track “Baby Mother,” which is about treating the woman carrying your child right.

It’s possible that both phenomena influenced baby mama. Poor English people were sent, after all, to work on the plantations in Jamaica as well.

The term baby mama became more common used in black US slang from the 1980s onward. By the 1990s, it was commonly found in hip-hop lyrics. The expression went mainstream with OutKast’s 2000 hit “Ms. Jackson,” which was dedicated to “baby mamas’ mamas.”

Who uses baby mama?

The term baby mama literally refers to the mother of a baby. The slang implication, however, is that the father doesn’t have a serious relationship with this person.


While the term baby mama originated in Black English, it’s gone mainstream—at least in the sense that tabloids feel comfortable running headlines like, “JUSTIN REVEALS BABY MAMA.” However, it’s still closely associated with black American culture, and use of it by others might come off as derogatory (activating harmful myths like welfare queen) or appropriative, depending on the context.

The term baby mama was initially derogatory, as it implied the woman was pregnant and unmarried (gasp). As a result, it has a negative connotation to this day. However, it’s also been adopted and used in a positive way by women themselves, as in Tina Fey and Amy Poehler’s 2008 comedy Baby Mama.


The expression baby mama drama is used to refer when there’s conflict in your relationship with your baby mama. Anything from custody to paternity disputes could fall under the umbrella of baby mama drama.

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