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Machine Gun Kelly’s childhood trauma

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Machine Gun Kelly may be one of the biggest artists in the world, but he didn’t have the easiest childhood – having been abandoned by his mother at age nine and growing up with a single father who suffered from mental health issues.

The 32-year-old singer, whose real name is Colson Baker, was born in Houston to missionary parents, but his mom left home when he was young for another man. 

The incident left the hitmaker distraught, with him later admitting, ‘I hated and resented that situation so much.’

According to reports, his dad battled depression and couldn’t hold a job, leading to him spending most of his childhood in poverty – with the rapper later admitting that he only had two different outfits to wear at one point, and that he sometimes slept in a chair instead of a bed.

After graduating high school, he was kicked out of his home out by his dad. He strenuously worked on creating music while also making burritos at a local Chipotle, and despite being on the verge of getting evicted from his apartment, he somehow landed himself a record deal with P. Diddy’s label after he was discovered during a performance.

Machine Gun Kelly introduced his estranged mother – who left his dad for another man when he was nine – to the world, one year after they reconnected thanks to his fans

In honor of their reunion, FEMAIL has taken a look back at MGK's childhood trauma - including how he overcame the pain of being abandoned by his mother at such a young age

In honor of their reunion, FEMAIL has taken a look back at MGK’s childhood trauma – including how he overcame the pain of being abandoned by his mother at such a young age

Flash forward to a decade later, his music has now been listened to by millions of people around the world.

The hitmaker, who is well known for blending hip hop with rock, recently took to Instagram to introduce his estranged mother – whose name has not been announced to the public – to his nine million followers, one year after he revealed that they had reconnected thanks to his fans.

He shared a snap to the platform on Thursday, which showed them sitting cross-legged and leaning into each other, while flashing big smiles at the camera.

He wrote in the caption: ‘Introducing … my mom.’

MGK, who donned a blue long-sleeve t-shirt, shorts, and pink sneakers, held up two middle fingers in the snap, while his mother, who kept it casual in a turquoise shirt and black pants, gave a peace sign.

In honor of their reunion, FEMAIL has taken a look back at MGK’s childhood trauma – from how he overcame the pain of being abandoned by his mother at such a young age to how he channeled it into his music and became a mega superstar.

MGK’s traumatic childhood: How he overcame the pain of being abandoned by his mom at a young age

According to reports, MGK's dad battled depression and couldn't hold a job, leading to him spending most of his childhood in poverty. He is pictured with his dad as a child

According to reports, MGK’s dad battled depression and couldn’t hold a job, leading to him spending most of his childhood in poverty. He is pictured with his dad as a child

The 32-year-old singer, whose real name is Colson Baker, was born in Houston to missionary parents. Throughout his childhood, the musician moved around a lot - living in Egypt, Germany, and many cities throughout the U.S.

The 32-year-old singer, whose real name is Colson Baker, was born in Houston to missionary parents. Throughout his childhood, the musician moved around a lot – living in Egypt, Germany, and many cities throughout the U.S.

Throughout his childhood, the musician moved around a lot – living in Egypt, Germany, and many cities throughout the U.S., including Chicago and Cleveland. After his mom left, he and his dad then went to live with his aunt in Denver. 

‘I hated and resented that situation so much,’ he once told Genius of his mom leaving.

MGK alluded to the childhood trauma in his 2019 song Burning Memories. The rap song opened with the lyrics: 'Yeah, this one's for the mama that I never knew (never knew), I took acid just to burn all of my memories of you.' He is pictured in 2020

MGK alluded to the childhood trauma in his 2019 song Burning Memories. The rap song opened with the lyrics: ‘Yeah, this one’s for the mama that I never knew (never knew), I took acid just to burn all of my memories of you.’ He is pictured in 2020

It’s been said that his dad, who suffered from depression, was unemployed leading to MGK growing up in poverty, which resulted in him being bullied by his classmates due to his lack of clothing.

‘I used to stand out because I was tall and I couldn’t really fight back then,’ he told First Avenue.

‘Then I got tired of getting beat up so I started fighting people with my words instead.’

MGK alluded to the childhood trauma in his 2019 song Burning Memories, which is from his fourth studio album, Hotel Diablo.

The rap song opened with the lyrics: ‘Yeah, this one’s for the mama that I never knew (never knew), I took acid just to burn all of my memories of you.’

The song later continued: ‘How’d you leave your only child at nine for another dude? Took that pain and punched my father in the stomach ’til he bled.

‘All the years that you ignored me, left me sleepless in the bed, I hope that he got some kids because your only son is dead.’

He also rapped about it in the track Lately on his EP Binge, saying, ‘I’m still dealing with some demons that ain’t really there, grew up a screw up, pierced my ear and dyed my f**king hair.

‘In seventh grade, I didn’t even have a bed, I had a chair. The f**k you think I go so hard for, I got out of there.’

MGK and his mom first reconnected last year, and it was actually his fans that inspired him to get back in contact with her.

‘Wild story but after all these years, the fans are responsible for me and my mom finally reconnecting, I love you,’ he tweeted in June 2021.

He and his father also had a strained relationship for many years, with the star tweeting in 2019, ‘Flew out to see my dad today. Broke down in my daughter’s arms when I saw him.

MGK and his mom first reconnected last year, and he said it was actually his fans that inspired him to get back in contact with her

MGK and his mom first reconnected last year, and he said it was actually his fans that inspired him to get back in contact with her

His dad passed away in July 2020, on the one-year anniversary of the release of his album Hotel Diablo, which he said resulted in him feeling the worst pain of his life. He is pictured as a kid for his Hotel Diablo album cover

His dad passed away in July 2020, on the one-year anniversary of the release of his album Hotel Diablo, which he said resulted in him feeling the worst pain of his life. He is pictured as a kid for his Hotel Diablo album cover

MGK, seen as a teen, has previously admitted that he was a 'rule-breaker' in his youth, telling GQ in 2019 that he was a 's***ty son' to his father

MGK, seen as a teen, has previously admitted that he was a ‘rule-breaker’ in his youth, telling GQ in 2019 that he was a ‘s***ty son’ to his father

‘I should’ve told him that I loved him years ago. Breaks my f**king heart that we wasted all this time.’ 

The rapper announced in July 2020 on social media that his dad had sadly passed away, on the one-year anniversary of the release of Hotel Diablo, which he said resulted in him feeling the worst pain of his life.

‘I had plans for the one year anniversary of Hotel Diablo today.‬ That album was everything I wanted to say and I know it’s close to my fans,’ he wrote on social media at the time.

‘But my father took his last breath this morning, and I’ve never felt a pain this deep in my life.‬’

The 32-year-old hitmaker, who welcomed a daughter, named Casie Colson Baker, in 2009 with then-girlfriend Emma Cannon, previously opened up about his teen years, and he apologized to his dad for being a’s***ty son’ and constant ‘rule-breaker.’

‘I have such a rule-abiding, amazing daughter and I was such a rule-breaking, s***ty son,’ he told GQ in 2019.

‘The legal fees, the tens of thousands of dollars from the times I got arrested, the finding out your son missed a whole semester of high school because he was waking up and pretending to go but never going.’

MGK’s impressive career: How he left poverty behind to become a mega superstar

After graduating high school, MGK (pictured in 2011) strenuously worked on creating music while also making burritos at a local Chipotle

After graduating high school, MGK (pictured in 2011) strenuously worked on creating music while also making burritos at a local Chipotle

MGK started listening to rap in sixth grade while attending Hamilton Middle School, with him sighting Ludacris, Eminem, and DMX as his favorite artists.

Despite being on the verge of getting evicted from his apartment, he somehow landed himself a record deal with P. Diddy's label after he was discovered during a local performance. He is pictured in 2011

Despite being on the verge of getting evicted from his apartment, he somehow landed himself a record deal with P. Diddy’s label after he was discovered during a local performance. He is pictured in 2011

In March 2009, while on the verge of being evicted, he started performing in rap battles at Harlem’s Apollo Theater in New York City.

He also recorded music in a makeshift at-home studio, and began to gain attention after he performed on MTV2’s Sucker Free Freestyle. 

At the time he also worked at Chipotle, which he later called the ‘worst job he ever had.’

‘Working at Chipotle [was the worst job]. It was the one that my high school [friends] would go to and I was working there right after I graduated,’ he told GQ.

‘A lot of people when they came back for Christmas from colleges would come in and be like, “Damn! I thought you were supposed to be some big rapper now. What happened?” 

‘I was getting laughed at constantly and I was thinking, “Maybe I’m just going to be stuck working s***ty jobs forever.”’ 

MGK released his first debut single, called Alice in Wonderland, in May 2010 via independent record label Block Starz Music.

During that time, he also dropped two mixtapes, and he started performing at Cleveland Cavaliers home games.

During one of his shows, he was approached by Sean Combs, also known as P. Diddy, who offered him a recording contract with his label Bad Boy Records, which is owned by Interscope. 

His first official album, called Lace Up, came out in October 2012, and it debuted at number four on the Billboard 200 chart. The lead single, Wild Boy, went on to become gold certified by the RIAA.

He went on to release five more albums – a bunch of which contained chart-topping hits – and has since embarked on a series of sold out world tours, becoming one of the most well-known artists in the world. 

His first official album, called Lace Up, came out in October 2012, and it debuted at number four on the Billboard 200 chart. He is pictured in March 2012, months before it hit stands

His first official album, called Lace Up, came out in October 2012, and it debuted at number four on the Billboard 200 chart. He is pictured in March 2012, months before it hit stands

MGK (pictured in 20130 went on to release five more albums and has since embarked on a series of sold out world tours, becoming one of the most well-known artists in the world

MGK (pictured in 20130 went on to release five more albums and has since embarked on a series of sold out world tours, becoming one of the most well-known artists in the world

He also stepped into the world of acting, starring in Beyond the Lights, The Land, Nerve, Roadies, Bird Box, Project Power, Midnight in the Switchgrass, and The Last Son. He is pictured in 2017

He also stepped into the world of acting, starring in Beyond the Lights, The Land, Nerve, Roadies, Bird Box, Project Power, Midnight in the Switchgrass, and The Last Son. He is pictured in 2017

He opened his own coffee house, called 27 Club Coffee, in his hometown of Cleveland.

He also stepped into the world of acting, starring in the 2014 romantic comedy Beyond the Lights, the 2016 drama The Land, and the thriller Nerve with Emma Roberts and Dave Franco.

He also had a recurring role in the Showtime series Roadies, and starred in Netflix’s horror movie Bird Box alongside Sandra Bullock. 

His other acting credits include the 2020 superhero movie Project Power, crime movie Midnight in the Switchgrass, and the western The Last Son.

The musician recently teamed up with Mod Sun, for the stoner comedy Good Mourning – which they co-directed, co-wrote, co-produced, and co-starred in together.

The film was inspired by MGK’s fiancée Megan Fox, 36, who also co-stars in it.

MGK’s complicated love life: How the father-of-one found his ‘twin soul’ Megan Fox 

In his teen years, MGK dated a woman named Emma Cannon, now 33. They welcomed a daughter together, named Casie Colson Baker, in 2009. They are pictured together in 2021

In his teen years, MGK dated a woman named Emma Cannon, now 33. They welcomed a daughter together, named Casie Colson Baker, in 2009. They are pictured together in 2021

It appears like the father-daughter duo is pretty close, with MGK often sharing pictures with his 'amazing' daughter to his social media accounts

It appears like the father-daughter duo is pretty close, with MGK often sharing pictures with his 'amazing' daughter to his social media accounts

It appears like the father-daughter duo is pretty close, with MGK often sharing pictures with his ‘amazing’ daughter to his social media accounts

In his teen years, MGK dated a woman named Emma Cannon, now 33. They welcomed a daughter together, named Casie, in 2009.

In 2015, he entered into a brief relationship with Amber Rose, whom he dated for two months before they split due to their busy schedules.

‘No we’re not dating anymore. I think it was just a mutual agreement. We’re still really good friends,’ she told Perez Hilton after they went their separate ways.

‘I can’t really support a man on tour anymore. I kind of did that already and I’m just not in a space where that’s really what I want to do.

In 2015, he entered into a brief relationship with Amber Rose, whom he dated for two months before they split due to their busy schedules. They are pictured in June 2015

In 2015, he entered into a brief relationship with Amber Rose, whom he dated for two months before they split due to their busy schedules. They are pictured in June 2015

In 2019, the rapper was spotted hanging out with model Chantel Jeffries on numerous occasions, sparking speculation that they were in a relationship; however, it appeared to fizzle out later that year. They are pictured in July 2019

In 2019, the rapper was spotted hanging out with model Chantel Jeffries on numerous occasions, sparking speculation that they were in a relationship; however, it appeared to fizzle out later that year. They are pictured in July 2019

There were rumors that MGK and Halsey dated in March 2017, after they were spotted at the beach together, however, she denied them on Twitter. They are pictured in May 2017

There were rumors that MGK and Halsey dated in March 2017, after they were spotted at the beach together, however, she denied them on Twitter. They are pictured in May 2017

‘I just need to focus on my son and my business. I’m dating other people and just having a good time.’

‘Everything was completely natural,’ he later said of their romance. ‘It wasn’t anything I had expected or had planned or anything like that. 

‘You know when the universe throws something your way or things happen, I’m one of those people that goes with it, and I don’t fight it.’

There were rumors that MGK and Halsey dated in March 2017, after they were spotted at the beach together, however, she denied them on Twitter.

In a later interview with The Breakfast Club, when asked if he had ever ‘smashed Halsey,’ he responded, ‘Absolutely.’ The two are still friends, and teamed up for a song together in 2020.

He and Megan Fox (pictured in May) met on set of Midnight In The Switchgrass in early 2020. The pair was seen holding hands one month later, seemingly confirming their relationship

He and Megan Fox (pictured in May) met on set of Midnight In The Switchgrass in early 2020. The pair was seen holding hands one month later, seemingly confirming their relationship

In 2019, the rapper was spotted hanging out with model Chantel Jeffries on numerous occasions, sparking speculation that they were in a relationship; however, it appeared to fizzle out later that year.

They announced their engagement in January 2022 with the artist writing at the time, 'Yes, in this life and every life. Beneath the same branches we fell in love under, I brought her back to ask her to marry me'

They announced their engagement in January 2022 with the artist writing at the time, ‘Yes, in this life and every life. Beneath the same branches we fell in love under, I brought her back to ask her to marry me’

Over the years, he was also linked to Kate Beckinsale, Noah Cyrus, Demi Lovato, and Sommer Ray, before he entered into a relationship with his now-fiancée Megan.

They met on set of Midnight In The Switchgrass in early 2020, with a source telling E! News at the time, ‘They’ve been hanging out a lot since their movie was shutdown [due to the pandemic].

‘The down time has been good for them… They are intrigued by each other and having a lot of fun.’

She starred as his girlfriend in his Bloody Valentines music video in May 2020, and the pair was seen holding hands one month later, seemingly confirming their relationship.

‘I knew right away that he was what I call a twin flame,’ Meghan gushed of MGK during an appearance on the Give Them Lala… With Randall podcast in July 2020.

‘Instead of a soul mate, a twin flame is actually where a soul has ascended into a high enough level that it can be split into two different bodies at the same time.

‘So we’re actually two halves of the same soul, I think. And I said that to him almost immediately, because I felt it right away.’

They announced their engagement in January 2022 with the artist writing at the time, ‘Yes, in this life and every life. Beneath the same branches we fell in love under, I brought her back to ask her to marry me.’

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