The “general” Japanese word for mother is お母さん (okaasan). However, there are numerous different means to to speak mother in Japanese, depending upon who you are talking to. Discovering the right word to use have the right to be complicated, however are means to find out Japanese quickly and also easily. Let’s take it a look in ~ the different ways to say mommy in Japanese naturally.

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1. お母さん (Okaasan)

お母さん (Okaasan) method “mother” in Japanese. That kanji, 母, to represent a parenting mother. There space two basic ways お母さん is used:

When you’re referring/talking to your own mother.When you’re talking about someone else’s mother.

Some kids will call their mother’s お母ちゃん (okaachan) rather of okaasan. There space some civilization who fall the お (o) from okaasan and also call their mother 母さん (kaasan). Adults sometimes use these words once they want to present endearment to their mothers. Regardless, okaasan is undoubtedly the most common and also pliable means to say mother in Japanese.


1. お母さん!俺の靴はどこにあるか知ってる? (Okaasan! Ore no kutsu wa doko ni aru ka shitteru?) Mom! carry out you understand where my shoes are?

2. あなたのお母さん、元気にしてる? (Anata no okaasan, genki ni shiteru?) How’s your mom doing?

2. 母 (Haha)

母 (haha) is the humble word because that mother in Japanese. If you to be to talk about your mother (to people outside of your family) in a formal situation, haha is the word you’d use. Due to the fact that this is humble Japanese or 謙譲語(kenjougo), it’s crude to describe other people’s mothers as haha. Only usage this word once you talk about your mother.


1. 私の母は和食を作るのが好きです。 (Watashi no haha wa washoku o tsukuru no ga suki desu.) My mom enjoys food preparation Japanese food.

3. お袋 (Ofukuro)

The word お袋 (ofukuro) is a much less formal way to refer to your mom when speaking to others. Some have actually posited the ofukuro is not culturally or grammatically “correct,” yet the word has still end up being commonplace. You have the right to use ofukuro one of two people in formal setups or about your friends. It’s even possible to call your friends’ mother ofukuro, so lengthy as you add -san.


1. このおにぎり、お袋さん作ったの?めっちゃ美味しい! (Kono onigiri, ofukuro-san tsukutta no? Meccha oishii!) walk your mother make this rice balls?

4. 母親 (Haha Oya)

母親 (haha oya) is a broader term because that mother in Japanese than the ahead words. Haha oya refers to any female that has had actually children.

This can technically typical a person mother or another kind of animal. Haha oya shouldn’t be supplied to speak to your own mother, together it would certainly feel cold and distant. That is possible to usage it to refer to the mother of someone to who you’re speaking, yet if you want to play the safe, お母さん (okaasan) will work for many situations. Haha oya should be supplied for the 3rd party only.


1. あの赤い帽子を被っている子、母親に叱られたね。 (Ano akai boushi o kabutteiru ko, haha oya ni shikarareta ne.) That young in the red cap was just scolded by his moth

2. 小熊はかわいいけど、母親は危険だ。 (Koguma wa kawaii kedo, haha oya wa kiken da.) be affected by each other cubs are cute, yet their mothers space dangerous.

5. ママ (Mama)

The indigenous ママ (mama) is used by small children in Japan to describe their mother. It has the very same nuance as words “mommy.”

Like okaachan, the indigenous mama might be supplied by adult as a ax of endearment. However, the nuance that mama is more childish. You absolutely wouldn’t want to describe your mom as mama in adult company.

6. おかん (Okan)

おかん(okan) originates native the nationally beloved Osakan dialect. However, the term spread and is now usual in every prefectures the Japan. Okan is a pet name for mother in Japanese. 

Think that it together the English indistinguishable to mom, mama, or mommy. The nuance to okan is a bit less childish 보다 that that mama; however, it’s still many common amongst middle and also high school students. Adults wouldn’t use words okan in publicly or formal settings.


1. 俺のおかんが昨日、ビーフシチューを作ってくれた。最高だった! (Ore no okan ga kinou, biifu shichuu o tsukutte kureta. Saikou datta!) my mama do beef stew critical night; it was awesome!

7. 御母堂様 (Gobodou-Sama)

御母堂 (gobodou) is really formal method of referring to who else’s mother. Gobodou is 尊敬語 (sonkeigo)or respectful Japanese. Much more often than not, the suffix 様 (-sama) will be affixed in ~ the end.

Gobodou is an unusual word. It’s greatly used in officially writing, such as in a letter or an invitation. You’re most likely to uncover gobodou in situations like a letter announcing the death of someone’s mother or in a letter the condolence provided at the funeral.


1. 御母堂様の御逝去に対し、心よりお悔やみ申し上げます。 (Gobodou-sama no goseikyo ni taishi, kokoro yori okuyami moushi agemasu.) I market my heartfelt condolences for your mother’s death.

8. 母上(Haha Ue)

Technically, 母上 (haha ue) is gaining to it is in an obsolete term. It’s origins are unclear, yet it appeared in a publication of poems in the Heian period (794-1185). Haha ue was frequently used by samurai families. It means mother in archaic Japanese.

While you wouldn’t call your own mommy haha ue, you will absolutely hear the word if you ever before watch a samurai film in Japanese.

Some Japanese human being call their mother haha ue as a joke, yet there room some world who use it normally to refer to their mother. Whether you like period films or just want to do your hold mother smile, haha ue still has its uses.


There is a multitude of means to say mother in Japanese. However, girlfriend can’t go wrong with the standard, “お母さん (okaasan)” for many situations.

How perform you speak mother in her language? let us understand in the comments! give thanks to you for reading!


Erin Himeno

Erin hails from the east shore of the unified States. She initially pertained to Japan come share her love of English and also country cookin", but ended up gaining married and also adopting 2 chubby cats. Erin doesn"t mind; she enjoys her life in Japan and also writes about society shock, society share, and the exciting chapters in between.

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