The “general” Japanese word for mother is お母さん (okaasan). However, there are many type of various ways to say mother in Japanese, depending upon that you are talking to. Knowing the right word to usage can be facility, but are means to learn Japanese easily and conveniently. Let’s take a look at the various methods to say mother in Japanese naturally.

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1. お母さん (Okaasan)

お母さん (Okaasan) implies “mother” in Japanese. Its kanji, 母, represents a nursing mom. There are two basic methods お母さん is used:

When you’re referring/talking to your own mommy.When you’re talking around someone else’s mom.

Some youngsters will call their mother’s お母ちゃん (okaachan) rather of okaasan. Tright here are some people who drop the お (o) from okaasan and also speak to their mothers 母さん (kaasan). Adults periodically use these words once they want to present endearment to their mothers. Regardless, okaasan is undoubtedly the the majority of prevalent and 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! Do you understand wright here 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 for mother in Japanese. If you were to talk around your mother (to world outside of your family) in a formal situation, haha is the word you’d use. Because this is humble Japanese or 謙譲語(kenjougo), it’s rude to refer to other people’s mothers as haha. Only use this word as soon as you talk around your mommy.


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)

Words お袋 (ofukuro) is a less formal method to refer to your mother once speaking to others. Some have actually posited that ofukuro is not culturally or grammatically “correct,” however the word has actually still end up being commonlocation. You deserve to usage ofukuro either in formal settings or around your friends. It’s even feasible to contact your friends’ mother ofukuro, so long as you include -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!) Did your mom make these rice balls?

4. 母親 (Haha Oya)

母親 (haha oya) is a wider term for mother in Japanese than the previous words. Haha oya refers to any female that has had youngsters.

This might technically expect a huguy mommy or an additional kind of animal. Haha oya shouldn’t be used to speak to your own mom, as it would certainly feel cold and remote. It is feasible to usage it to refer to the mom of someone to whom you’re speaking, but if you desire to play it safe, お母さん (okaasan) will certainly work-related for the majority of situations. Haha oya must be offered for the third 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 boy in the red hat was simply scolded by his moth

2. 小熊はかわいいけど、母親は危険だ。 (Koguma wa kawaii kecarry out, haha oya wa kiken da.) Bear cubs are cute, however their mothers are dangerous.

5. ママ (Mama)

The word ママ (mama) is offered by little kids in Japan to describe their mother. It has the exact same nuance as the word “mommy.”

Like okaachan, the word mama might be offered by adults as a term of endearment. However, the nuance of mama is more childish. You absolutely wouldn’t desire to describe your mom as mama in adult firm.

6. おかん (Okan)

おかん(okan) originates from the nationally beloved Osakan language. However, the term spreview and also is now common in all prefectures of Japan. Okan is a pet name for mother in Japanese. 

Think of it as the English tantamount to mommy, mama, or mommy. The nuance to okan is a little bit much less childish than that of mama; however, it’s still most widespread among middle and also high college students. Adults wouldn’t use the word okan in public 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 made beef stew last night; it was awesome!

7. 御母堂様 (Gobodou-Sama)

御母堂 (gobodou) is a very formal means of referring to someone else’s mother. Gobodou is 尊敬語 (sonkeigo)or respectful Japanese. More frequently than not, the sufsolve 様 (-sama) will certainly be affixed at the end.

Gobodou is an unwidespread word. It’s greatly used in formal composing, such as in a letter or an invitation. You’re a lot of likely to find gobodou in instances favor a letter announcing the death of someone’s mom or in a letter of condolence offered 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 sell my heartfelt condolences for your mother’s death.

8. 母上(Haha Ue)

Technically, 母上 (haha ue) is gaining to be an obsolete term. It’s beginnings are unclear, but it appeared in a book of poems in the Heian Period (794-1185). Haha ue was often used by samurai households. It implies mother in archaic Japanese.

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

Some Japanese people call their mothers haha ue as a joke, however tright here are some people who usage it normally to describe their mom. Whether you choose period movies or just want to make your host mom smile, haha ue still has actually its supplies.


Tright here is a multitude of means to say mother in Japanese. However, you can’t go wrong with the standard, “お母さん (okaasan)” for a lot of instances.

How carry out you say mother in your language? Let us know in the comments! Thank you for reading!


Erin Himeno

Erin hails from the east shore of the United States. She initially pertained to Japan to share her love of English and nation cookin", but finished up getting married and adopting 2 chubby cats. Erin does not mind; she enjoys her life in Japan and also writes around culture shock, society share, and also the exciting chapters in in between.

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