Nicki Minaj’s Son: Everything to Know

Nicki Minaj proudly takes on the “most fulfilling job” of her life: motherhood.

The “Super Freaky Girl” rapper welcomed her first child, a son, with husband Kenneth “Zoo” Petty on Sept. 30, 2020, after the couple wed in October 2019.

Since becoming a mom, Minaj says she’s “more of a forgiving person.”

“I think motherhood has made me see more good in people, more good in the universe,” she said during a February 2022 appearance on The Late Late Show with James Corden.

“When I look at my son, I’m reminded that I am so blessed,” she continued. “I realized, for so many women, this is their dream. Their dream is to have a child and not everybody gets that blessing. So when you have a little baby, you are reminded every day like, ‘Oh my God. Thank you God for this little gift.’ “

During a conversation with E! News, Minaj shared that she’s experienced “more anxiety” since welcoming her son, whom she publicly calls “Papa Bear.” The anxiety is particularly intense when she has to be apart from him for extended periods of time.

“I remember being in the U.K. and just bawling,” Minaj told the outlet. “And when I try to FaceTime him, I get more sad. So, I try to hold out on FaceTiming him because to then put the phone down is so difficult.”

From his birth story to his adorable nickname and his first major milestones, here’s everything to know about Nicki Minaj’s 3-year-old son.

Nicki Minaj and Kenneth Petty welcomed their baby boy on Sept. 30, 2020, at a hospital in Los Angeles. Minaj shared the first photo of him, offering a glimpse of his tiny foot, three weeks later to mark her 1-year wedding anniversary with Petty on Oct. 21, 2020.

Minaj was in labor “all night” with him

Three months after her little one’s arrival, the rapper told fans about his birth story in a Twitter Q&A.

“I was butt naked,” she said of the moment her water broke. “Just got out the shower & I asked him [husband Petty] to rub my back. As soon as I started scooting over to him in the bed I just felt the water start coming out. I was weirdly calm & I quietly said ‘omg, I’m about to be in labor.’ “

In screengrabs captured by The Shade Room, Minaj added that she was in labor “all night” and “pushed for 2 1/2 hours.” She explained that at “first the epidural didn’t wear off enough for me to feel myself pushing. Once I was able to feel the pain I pushed him out.”

He goes by the nickname “Papa Bear”

Minaj first introduced her son to fans with his adorable nickname: “Papa Bear.” She has yet to reveal his real name, referring to him as “Papa” and “Papa Bear” on social media. She and Petty have both leaned into the adorable nickname, dressing him in shirts with Burberry’s classic Thomas Bear and even setting him up with a personalized license plate for his toy car.

Minaj also used her son’s nickname when she gave him a shout-out during her MTV Video Music Awards speech in August 2022. “I have a new baby. His name is Papa Bear and I love him,” she said on stage while accepting the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award. “Papa Bear, I love you so much. Mommy loves you so, so, so, so, so, so, so much.”

Minaj changed his name “at the last minute”

Despite keeping her little one’s real name a secret, Minaj kicked off 2021 by revealing to her Barbz that she had changed his moniker “at the last minute.”

“You know what his name was supposed to be? I think I might still change it,” she said on her fan radio on Jan. 1, 2021, according to ET. “A lot of people said they liked it, but I said, ‘Nah,’ ” she explained before revealing her son’s initial name. “His name was going to be Ninja.”

He didn’t have a nanny at first

A few weeks after welcoming her son, the rapper revealed that she had yet to hire any childcare, calling it a “difficult decision.”

Responding to a fan on Twitter who asked why she couldn’t hire a nanny like a “normal celebrity” because they missed her, Minaj replied, “Lol. I rlly [sic] should get one. Difficult decision tho [sic].”

She added that her baby boy wanted “undivided attention” from her. “Last night I tried to tweet while I was feeding him. He looked [at] me & said ‘absolutely TF NOT,’ ” she tweeted. “He wants his undivided attention chile.”

He’s got a strong sense of humor

In March 2022, the proud mom shared an adorable clip of her son playing his new favorite game, a version of peek-a-boo, which involves getting his mom’s attention so that he can ignore her.

“Every day papa makes me call him so he can ignore me & look [at] me from the corner of his eye. Just so I can keep saying ‘I see you’ and he can pull the covers or curtains over his face & hide from me. 🙈🤫👀,” she wrote, adding the game made her nervous at first. “At first I used to rlly [sic] think he was just zoning out & not hearing me & I got a lil worried. But no it’s just him thinking he a lil comedian or smthn [sic],” she explained. “Lol this boy. Mama loves you so much Papa 😘.”

He had a Kung Fu Panda-themed first birthday party

To celebrate his first birthday, Minaj and Petty threw their son an epic Kung Fu Panda-themed birthday bash.

“On Sept. 30th you turned 1. Mama is so proud of you, PapaBear,” Minaj wrote on Instagram alongside photos of the family of three. “You’re the best boy in the whole wide world. I don’t know what I did to deserve you, but God bless you, son. Mommy & Daddy will never stop loving you.”

The festivities included “face painting, making balloons, making headbands, [a] bouncy house, photo booth,” and more, Minaj wrote on Instagram. After all the revelry, the Grammy nominee realized that “once everyone left I forgot we didn’t cut the cake ‼️‼️‼️” She added that she “had to bring my baby out in his pajamas” for him to eat it.

He’s got his own wheels

Minaj’s baby boy got his own set of wheels for Christmas! Papa Bear officially joined the ranks of famous junior joy riders for the holidays, riding around in a tiny Lamborghini with custom plates that read “Papa Bear.” It looks like he may already need his own tiny garage: his parents also threw in a kids’ Mercedes for good measure.