Did Mary J. Blige and Jodeci's K-Ci Have Any Children Together?

In the 1990s, Mary J. Blige revolutionized hip-hop with her unmistakable voice and brutal honesty in her lyrics. At the same time she was gaining global recognition for her music, she was in a high-profile relationship with fellow R&B star K-Ci Hailey from the popular group Jodeci.

Mary J. Blige and K-Ci’s relationship

Blige first crossed paths with K-Ci in the early ’90s when she was recording her debut album What’s the 411? They began dating shortly after that and quickly became R&B’s hottest couple.

But all was not well behind the scenes. Blige reflected on the relationship in her 2021 documentary Mary J. Blige’s My Life. “It became very dark, the whole thing, and abusive,” she said. “I’ve had to physically fight for my life a lot, because, just like my mom, I’m a fighter.”

Blige recounted her trauma without explicitly naming the Jodeci singer in a 2002 interview with The Guardian. “I was in a hellish relationship. When you hate yourself, you draw people to you who hate you too,” she said honestly. “I kept getting the same lesson over and over and finally knew there was something I had to learn.”

Do Mary J. Blige and K-Ci have kids?

Blige admitted in her documentary that “it was a lot of manipulation” in their relationship, and that because of that manipulation, she kept convincing herself that she needed to stay with K-Ci. “‘If I’m going to be here, I’m going to dumb myself all the way down. I’m going to play myself all the way down, so I don’t think I’m special so I can be with you,’” she recalled herself thinking.

In 1994, Blige released her earth-shattering sophomore album My Life, which explored themes of abuse, addiction, and other personal struggles she’d faced at different points in her life. The album remains one of R&B’s most iconic albums, but Blige admitted that she couldn’t even soak everything in at the time. 

“I couldn’t enjoy what was going on. I couldn’t even enjoy my success,” she lamented. “I was in a relationship where we were both young [and] both super successful. I loved him, but neither one of us could handle the success of our lives.”

Blige and K-Ci’s relationship lasted five years from 1992 until 1997. Throughout that time, the two never had any children together. To this day, Mary J. Blige has never had any children of her own; K-Ci’s son, Devin Hailey, is an R&B artist himself.

Mary J. Blige and K-Ci never got married

At one point in their relationship, Blige thought that marriage was in her and K-Ci’s future. He bought her a ring, and Blige understood it to be an engagement ring.

But in an appearance on the British TV show The Word in the early ’90s, K-Ci was asked if he was marrying Blige and he shrugged off the idea. “That’s a rumor,” he said. “K-Ci is not getting married, for the record!” 

When Blige appeared on The Word weeks later, they showed her the clip of K-Ci and asked if there was “no huge engagement ring.” Blige was visibly upset by what K-Ci had said. “No, we’re not getting married now,” she said. “Let’s move on, please. I’m disgusted.”

K-Ci told his side of the story to Vibe magazine in 2006.

“I never said I was going to marry her,” he said plainly. “Yes, I gave her a ring, not because I wanted to marry her. I gave her a ring after she came off tour and she kept hinting around that she wanted a ring. I never agreed to marry Mary J. We never talked about starting a family or anything like that. We were not as serious as people thought.”

How to get help: In the U.S., contact the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration helpline at 1-800-662-4357.

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