Select Page

Nicki Minaj found love where her fans least expected it. The rapper raised eyebrows when she went public with Kenneth “Zoo” Petty, who is a registered sex offender, in December 2018.

Since then, the couple, who married in October 2019, have been unfazed by the backlash surrounding their whirlwind romance. Minaj has defended Petty from critics on Instagram, where she continues to flaunt the pair’s journey to love with PDA-filled photos and videos.

The Queens native — who previously dated rappers Safaree Samuels, Meek Mill and Nas — has long expressed her desire to settle down and start a family.

“If I’m done with my fifth album and I don’t have a child by then, no matter how much money I have, I would be disappointed, as a woman, because I feel like I was put here to be a mother,” she told Complex in December 2014. “I have definitely put off the wife thing because I don’t want people in my business. I’d rather not do anything that’s going to be on paper but I definitely will be married before I have my baby. I want to make sure I do it in that order. I’ve always felt like that since I was young; my mother always put that in my head. By the fifth album, I will have walked down the aisle and I will at least be on baby No. 1, possibly baby No. 2. And have $500 million.”

That said, Minaj has made it clear that she has never relied on a man. “As soon as I realized that I could actually live and breathe, and eat and sleep, and walk and talk without having a boyfriend, something clicked in me. The fact that I am a young woman who doesn’t need a man for money. I don’t need a man for the job,” she told Elle in July 2018. “I’ve never had to f–k for beats. I’ve never had to f–k for a record deal. I don’t have those pressures. I get up when I want, shop when I want.”

Scroll down to see a timeline of Minaj and Petty’s relationship so far.

December 2018

The Grammy nominee first showed off her beau on Instagram in December 2018, when she posted photos of them celebrating her 36th birthday. “Did you ever make it out of that town where nothing ever happens?… it’s no secret… that the both of us… are running out of time,” she captioned her post, using lyrics from Adele’s song “Hello.”

Courtesy of Nicki Minaj/Instagram

December 2018

Minaj has brushed off social media users who criticized her romance and pointed out that Petty was convicted in 1995 of first-degree attempted rape and pleaded guilty in 2006 to first-degree manslaughter. (He has served several years in prison for his crimes.) “He was 15, she was 16 … in a relationship [in the rape case]. But go awf, Internet,” she wrote on Instagram in December 2018, the same day she posted a risqué photo in bed with Petty. “Y’all can’t run my life. Y’all can’t even run y’all own life. Thank you boo.”

Courtesy of Nicki Minaj/Instagram

December 2018

Us Weekly confirmed in December 2018 that the couple have a long history. “Nicki and Kenneth dated when she was a teenager, before she was famous,” a source revealed. “They linked up when she handed out turkeys for Thanksgiving in her hometown.”

Courtesy of Nicki Minaj/Instagram

December 2018

Minaj revealed in December 2018 that Petty got a large tattoo of her real first name, Onika, on his neck. “Did ya tat hurt zaddy? his first tat,” she captioned an Instagram video of the ink. “Frontin like it didn’t sting #Onika #HeavyOnIt #SuperSleezy.”

Courtesy of Nicki Minaj/Instagram

December 2018

A source told Us exclusively in December 2018 that the lovebirds “have discussed” having children. “Nicki is absolutely head over heels in love with Kenny,” the insider said. “She fell hard and fast. She hasn’t smiled this much in a long time. … She really believes that he has changed since his troublesome days, but some of her friends are still a bit wary.”

Courtesy of Nicki Minaj/Instagram

January 2019

Minaj uploaded a video of Petty kissing her feet in a hot tub on Instagram in January 2019. “Fendi PINK on. Chun-Li links on,” she captioned the clip, adding emojis of a tongue and foot.

Courtesy of Nicki Minaj/Instagram

January 2019

The “Super Bass” singer revealed during a candid Q&A session with her Twitter followers in January 2019 that she and Petty have sex three to four times a night “on average” because “6 is a bit much sis.” She also confirmed that they have known “each other since we were very young kids in the hood … B4 the fame & fortune,” adding, “But anyway, timing is everything.”

Courtesy of Nicki Minaj/Instagram

February 2019

Minaj and Petty celebrated a friend’s birthday together with rapper Young M.A in Hollywood in February 2019.

Johnny Nunez/Getty Images

March 2019

The former American Idol judge sparked marriage rumors when she called Petty her “husband” on her Beats 1 show, Queen Radio, in March 2019. “Every night when I get out of the shower, my husband takes this really good lotion that we just bought, and he massages my feet and rubs them, and he rubs each toe individually, and the heel and the ball of my foot, and he does it all,” she said. A source later told Us that the lovebirds did not secretly wed.

Spread Pictures / MEGA

June 2019

Petty made an appearance in the explicit music video for Minaj’s single “Megatron,” in which she twerked for her shirtless beau in a hot tub. Hours after dropping the song in June 2019, the MC announced on Queen Radio that she and Petty got their marriage license. She also shut down pregnancy rumors, but noted that having a child is her “end goal.”


June 2019

Minaj shared three photos of herself cuddling with her beau on a couch via Instagram in June 2019.

Courtesy Nicki Minaj/Instagram

July 2019

The Barbershop: The Next Cut actress was a vision in red in a pair of Instagram photos with Petty in July 2019. “I remember when I cried like ‘why me?’ Now I wouldn’t Exchange my life for Armani,” she captioned the post.

Courtesy of Nicki Minaj/Instagram

July 2019

The couple had to pick up a second marriage license in Beverly Hills in July 2019 after the first expired. “From that time, [we] have 90 days to get married,” Minaj later said on Queen Radio. She then changed her name on Twitter to “Mrs. Petty.”

Courtesy Nicki Minaj/Instagram

October 2019

Minaj announced on Instagram in October 2019 that she married Petty. “Onika Tanya Maraj-Petty 10•21•19,” she captioned a video of “Mr.” and “Mrs.” baseball caps and coffee mugs.

Jason Merritt/Radarpics/Shutterstock

January 2020

The “Yikes” rapper and her husband got into a heated argument with her ex Mill at the Los Angeles clothing store Maxfield in January 2020. The former couple later traded barbs on Twitter.

Courtesy of Nicki Minaj/Instagram

February 2020

Minaj gushed over Petty on Queen Radio in February 2020, telling listeners, “Whenever I’m down, I can have one conversation with my husband and it will get me back where I need to be mentally. He’s been a really great force in my life. I’ve known him since I was 17, and I feel a level of comfort with him that I hadn’t felt before to just be myself and to share who I am.”

Broadimage/Shutterstock

July 2020

Minaj announced in July 2020 that she is pregnant with the couple’s first child. “#Preggers,” she captioned an Instagram photo of herself cradling her bare baby bump.

Alex “Grizz” Loucas

September 2020

The couple became parents in September 2020 when their son arrived.

Courtesy of Nicki Minaj/Instagram

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This

Share This

Share this post with your friends!