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We drop 的 in any structure where the relationship can be clearly inferred. It also serves to highlight the relation there. 我媽媽 我朋友 我孩子 and so on. As a rule of thumb, "don't do it if you have to rethink". As a note, dropping it is a no-brainer for familial and personal relations.


If you wish to put emphasis on possession, then you should keep 的. Aw Qirui Guo's Example: “那是谁的手机” whos phone is that “我妈妈的” my mother's Be careful to say 妈妈 and not just 妈 here, especially if the owner of the phone is someone else's mother...haha. Note: 我妈 sounds relative more mature and probably more common 我妈妈 sounds more ...


的 in Chinese is a bit complicated. It may get dropped in different situations. Here are some examples for you: 我(的)妈妈是个老师 - sometimes can be dropped 我妈妈的同学是个老师 - better be dropped 我妈妈同学是个老师 - not so good, not recommended “那是谁的手机” “我妈妈的。” - should be always dropped


In casual conversation, you can even drop the second 妈 in most cases. So you can just say 我妈 without any problems. In fact, it sounds even more natural.


When you are talking about family, close friends (我朋友) or a group that you are part of for example 我班 in chinese you don't use 的. They are both grammatically correct but it is more natural to skip it.

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