What Does WYM Mean in a Text?

homesearch wWYM
WYM means "What You Mean?" (as in "What do you mean?") and "Watch Your Mouth" (as in "Watch what you are saying"). Here is more information about each of these definitions, with examples of use.

What You Mean?

image for WYM, showing a question mark

WYM is often used in texting and online chats as a request for clarification. It is an abbreviation of the interrogative sentence, "What do you mean?", used to prompt the recipient to elaborate on or explain their preceding statement. For example:

  • Jo: I hate Beyonce's new song.
  • Jordan: WYM?! It's the best she has ever done.
  • Jo: Jordan reckons Beyonce's new song is the best she has ever done.
  • Sam: WYM? Single Ladies is the classic of all time!
  • Barry: WYM, you can't come on Friday? It's been booked since last month!
  • Ali: WYM? You never told me you had made a reservation.
"What do you mean" is is also abbreviated as WDUM and WDYM.

Watch Your Mouth

image for WYM, showing an emoji with hand over mouth

WYM is also sometimes used as an abbreviation of the cautionary phrase "Watch your mouth." In this context, it is used to advise someone to be mindful of their language or the way they express themselves, especially in contexts where their words might be considered inappropriate, offensive, or disrespectful. It is a warning to speak more carefully. For example:

  • Billy: I hate Beyonce's new song.
  • Reilly: WYM! Don't diss the B!
  • Lee: I am sick of this Goddam job!
  • Chris: WYM! The Good Lord hears everything.

Image for WYM

When I write WYM, I mean this:

meaning of WYM

The meaning of WYM depends on the context.

Summary of Key Points for First Definition

"What You Mean?" is the most common definition for WYM on Snapchat, WhatsApp, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok.
Definition:What You Mean?
Guessability:guessability level 2
2: Quite easy to guess
Typical Users:typical user

Adults and Teenagers

Summary of Key Points for Second Definition

WYM also means "Watch Your Mouth!"
Definition:Watch Your Mouth!
Guessability:guessability level 2
2: Quite easy to guess
Typical Users:typical user

Adults and Teenagers

An Academic Look at WYM

WYM is classified as an initialism abbreviation, as it is pronounced one letter at a time. Other examples of initialisms are:
  • JPA - "Just Playing Around."
  • SPWM - "Stop Playing With Me."
Initialisms are different to acronyms, which are abbreviations spoken as words.
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When used with the meaning "What you mean?", WYM plays the role of an interrogative sentence (i.e., a question), but it is commonly seen without a question mark. (Ironically, just typing a question mark on its own ("?") would have the same effect as typing WYM, with or without the question mark.) However, when used with the meaning "Watch your mouth", WYM is an imperative (i.e., an order). It can be followed by a period (full stop) or an exclamation mark, depending on the forcefulness of the command. However, for purposes of brevity punctuation such as exclamation marks, question marks, and even periods are often omitted when texting.

Example of WYM Used in a Text

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