“Hi, Bye Mama” Heartbreaking Ending (Episode 16) Explained

Published Categorized as Kdrama Recaps

“Hi, Bye Mama” has wrapped up its run with its 16th episode airing a couple of hours ago.

The ending was, as many had already expected, heartbreaking. While some loved the ending, others didn’t and the current sentiment of many k-netizens is anger towards the writer for the heartbreaking ending.

But what happened in episode 16 that caused netizens to react that way? here is a quick recap of the finale of “Hi, Bye Mama.”

Related:“Hi Bye Mama” Is A Missed Opportunity That Could’ve Been One Of The Best, But Is Still Heartwarming- Review

“Hi, Bye Mama” episode 16 recap

Yuri tells Kang Hwa that she must leave after completing her 49 days, she tells him she chose to leave because if she stays, her daughter will see ghosts for the rest of her life. Kang Hwa is struck by the news; he finds out that she doesn’t want to go back to her original place.


Kang Hwa returns the next day to try and convince her to stay, but she refuses because she knows that Seo Woo will struggle for the rest of her life if she remains and she doesn’t want that for her daughter.

Ms. Mi Dong meets up with Yuri after finding out why she was able to go back to life, her mother’s wish to see her just one more time was the reason behind it. She tells her that the judgment is her decision, she can be greedy and choose to stay but her life will be switched with Seo Woo, she tells Mi Dong she won’t do that but instead will make the most of the remaining time she has.

Yuri goes to her unnie and tells her she chose to leave and asks for her help to go up with a smile. Her unnie tells her that Min Jung has decided to end things with Kang Hwa.


Yuri is upset about this and wants to fix the issue, she goes to the daycare and sees her daughter vomiting, she’s rushed to the hospital and they find out she had acute enteritis, but she’ll be okay. Min Jung rushes to the hospital to check on Seo Woo, after seeing Yuri, she leaves.

Yuri stops her and asks her to stay by her husband and daughter’s side since she must leave. They have a talk together in which Yuri explains that she had to leave. Kang Hwa later arrives at the hospital and talks to Min Jung, she asks him to send his wife off well so he won’t have any regrets, but she doesn’t seem to have changed her mind about the divorce.


Yuri makes a list of promises and things she wants to do before she leaves. She treats the remaining ghosts to dinner, meets up with her friend and says goodbye to her family among other things.

She also goes on a camping trip with her family and her BFF. There her unnie tells her that Min Jung asked her to send Yuri off well with Kang Hwa and explains that she doesn’t know if they’ll divorce or not, she assures Yuri it wasn’t her fault because their relationship still wouldn’t have worked. Min Jung wrote a letter to Yuri saying goodbye because she doesn’t have the courage to see her face to face, she promises she’ll always look after Seo Woo.


The next morning, Yuri says goodbye to Seo Woo and tells her to take good care of herself, Seo Woo replies with,

“Bye, Mom.”


Yuri later meets Ms. Mi Dong at a beautiful road with cherry blossom trees, she says goodbye to her and then leaves.


Years have passed and Seo woo has grown up, she’s reading a book with a note from her mother on a photo they had taken together when she was alive. She sees her parents and says, ‘mom, dad,’ and runs towards them. It seems that Kang Hwa and Min Jung worked things out and didn’t get a divorce.


She asks her father if he had surgery today, he tells her didn’t- a change from his normal schedule.

The end.

Netizens thoughts

Netizens reactions were bad, they didn’t like the ending and blamed the writer for ‘wasting Kim Tae Hee’s talent,’ here are some of their comments (credit):

  • One line review: The drama’s plot got lost in the mountains but Kim Tae Hee made a successful return to the small screen
  • Is the scriptwriter reading the comments? ㅋㅋㅋㅋ There’s always one downvote to all the negative comments
  • The scriptwriter needs to seriously consider quitting her job. How can a plot be this plotless?
  • In the beginning, Jo Kwang Hwa didn’t even celebrate Seo Woo’s birthday because it was Yuri’s death anniversary… and yet she sent her off this easily..? Poor Yuri’s family..
  • This drama could’ve ended up as Kim Tae Hee’s best work… and yet the story got lost in the mountains

What did you think of “Hi, Bye Mama” ending? did you like it?

Whats your reaction to this article?

By Jass K.

Hi, I am Jass k. I discuss some of the hottest currently airing kdramas on this site in form of reviews an/or recaps, join me in the discussion~


  1. The series has its poignant and memorable moments albeit with muddled plot. It made sense however that Yuri has to die. She is already dead and just came back for some sort of closure for herself and for her loved ones. I skipped so many scenes in the last two episodes because it felt draggy.

  2. The ending was… horrible.

    It went from episode 1-15 saying how Ganghwa was still in love with Yuri, couldn’t live without her, had no emotions for Min-Jung only for him to end up with Min-Jung.

    Made no sense at all.

    K-netz are right, horrid ending, lost the plot.

        1. Why would that be a better ending? There’s no comfort in that. There were no bad guys in this drama in which someone had to be punished. If the husband is left alone, that would be a punishment. To me, even though a few shedding of tears happened, it was closure and comforting. It was an ending that had to happen.

          1. It was my first time to watch a K drama as they have been talking about it. But a lot of disappointment Episode 16 I did not watch as it was a bad ending. The writer could have twist it a little bit. The viewer end up sooo broken hearted. I wish it was a happy ending. The love story started so sad and end up for more heartaches for the lead star. I should have watch something else and not waste my time!!!!

        2. Yes i eas so sad and disappointed when i saw them interlinking their arms in last seen even when seo woo was not tyeir . Man u got treated how can u forget yuri why . He could have lived alone and coparenting . What if after 4or 5 years min jeong / gang hwa dies will the person marry again . I mean dude u both yuri and hwa loved each other so much u coukd have lived with her memories u r not alone u have ur daughter also .

  3. I liked min Jong and the mom the most. The husband was a very broken dude.. I have seen people like this in my life.. I kind of understand what the scriptwriter wanted to convey.. Whoever wrote this probably wanted to show the value of connections in our lives people we take for granted that we could loose at any time.. Or it could be us too.. Its a great message for the current times.. We should cherish the time we are given with others and enjoy the memories we ha e made even after they are gone.. So be sure to make good once.. Many of us also have had relationships that died along the way.. Basically min jing depicted one kind of relationship we’re the person tried their best but couldn’t really see the whole person she loved as he had a lot of hidden pain he didn’t want to reveal to her.. I know there are points when the drama didn’t make any sense but which k drama does.. Especially one we’re someone came back from the dead and people never asked her what happens after death as the first question .. But I still likes the message of the show.. People just want happy fairytale endings.. But the truth is life has k ly one ending and that is death..

  4. I hated the ending like dude are u seriously joking with me right now I wasted my spring break waiting for each episode and expected and happy and cute ending but nooo that writer had to ruin the whole ending with minjong and gang hwa getting Back together like dude just wasted my time and my patience like I love the cast just not the writer decision of how they need the drama (Like I watched it right when it came out for international fans)

  5. How can a life filled with hopelessnesses without triumph? This is a depressing drama rather than hopeful and triumphant. Never going to watch Korean melodrama anymore.!

  6. I really pity Kang Hwa the most. He loved Yuri so much that if he was in the OR he would have saved Yuri instead of the unborn baby.
    But of course mother’s love is so powerful that if we take a poll all mothers will ask to save the unborn child within her.
    The writer could have given us a happy ending, but like the title says Hi, Bye Mama..
    you know she will be gone again.
    It just leaves us a heavy heart not to see Yuri and Kang Hwa continue together as a happy family.

  7. I love the ending. This ending proves that yuri is a nice person who loves her husband, daughter, families n frens very much. She is not afraid to let go of those who are very dear to her. She is wise in making her decision to leave her loved ones and move on, enabling her loved ones to also move on with their lives. If she were to stay and “take her place”, it would have contradicted with her personality and upbringing.

  8. They honestly could’ve ended the show like Angel’s last mission love which would’ve made this perfect but they didn’t i cried for a whole hour straight. Min jeong wanted a divorce from the beginning of the kanghwa still missed yuri he couldnt even do surgery so how was he able to leave her like that and magically cure his ptsd. naw bro this wasnt a gift to her this was straight torture for 49 days and to have no choice to really stay it was a pointless plot. And how could you do that to a mom to give her daughter back and then take her away again I’d rather stay dead. When so woo said bye mom i lost it i cried like a baby so you telling me this whole time and only now you decide to call her you’ve been seeing her all your life before min jeong but now she becomes your mom.

  9. The storyline is so good. But why do the writer have to spoil the ending! I always look forward to watch the next episode but didnt even bother to watch the last episode as i had a feeling yuri will die again! What a disappointment!

  10. I don’t want to watch the last episode ( 16) because i had the the feeling that it’s not a happy ending for Yuri and her husband on the 15th episode. And i think it is indeed. So sorry i don’t want to finish it. It’s heartbreaking. The husband is still so much in love to Yuri why not giving it a chance. Sorry… for me, i won’t recommend others to watch it because it’ s very frustrating. So irrational.

  11. I don’t want to watch the last episode ( 16) because i had the the feeling that it’s not a happy ending for Yuri and her husband on the 15th episode. And i think it is indeed. So sorry i don’t want to finish it. It’s heartbreaking. The husband is still so much in love to Yuri why not giving it a chance. Sorry… for me, i won’t recommend others to watch it because it’ s very frustrating. So irrational.

  12. I don’t know maybe 50/50? I’m sad and happy at the same time. Am i suppose to be sad? Or happy?. Idk. I like this drama so much and i think i really love it.

  13. Tbh I think that the end was very well written. This was the best way to end it. If yuri would have gone back to her place it would have been unfair from many places. And the plot just highlights how a mother is. And that’s why I think this was actually the best way to end it

  14. I actually understood why it ended like that. Well the title would be pointless if that is not the ending. For me, either Kong Hwa managed to get back together with Minjeong or get to move along with his life with his daughter Seowoo happy and contended, it is okay as long as they are happy

  15. Such a beautiful drama….it ended the way it should have….
    All great actors! I would recommend this drama to my family and friends. Thank you for a sharing this wonderful drama.

  16. Hi Bye, Mama’s ending was absolutely garbage!!!!!
    Who in hell sits around and writes an ending that is fn insanity at its core!
    The make lead was fricking shameless. He had not even the slightest hesitation of throwing his current wife under the bus so that his dead wife could truly take her place again at his side, so that she could actually live and no longer be not in that limbo state… So basically he showed his true self. That even though he had remarried, his love for his first wife trumped all else; he was just going through the motions and never truly opened his heart to his second wife….. Then to have an ending to indicate that they worked it out and everything is just peachy keen is ludicrous. As his second wife you already know after he made it perfectly clear to you how he truly felt, that you would never be the only one; hell, how do you compete with a ghost, memories, and everything attached it. Regardless of how much she loves him, just knowing the fact and truth of what he said and did would be too much! Whi in their right mind would stay with someone that has told you and showed you where their heart, love a d allegiance truly lies

  17. Lorie Pennywell

    Why would being alone be punishment lol, now you are reaching. Him being alone and healing his wound is a realistic ending. He doesn’t need to find a replacement again. There’s thousands of people that are able to move on and get better alone because they can actually focus on themselves.

    Min-Jung was a replacement from beginning to end so she got a horrid ending just to keep Ganghwa from “ getting punishment” lol.

  18. I feel like the ending was rushed… I mean, the exorcist disappeared, the ghosts were being sent away off-screen and the plot seemed to change. The fact that Yuri’s mother made the wish should mean that the 49 days had been assumed and that Yuri could infact stay without taking her old place back.

    I think because of the coronavirus, they had to change their original plans because cast members could no longer go to work and so they changed it up to finish on the original day they had planned…they already were delayed with filming so it makes sense…

  19. I like watching Korean dramas because of their Romantic and intertwining plots & relationships, humor, supernatural, and historical references and parallels. There is almost always a moral to the story and a happy ending. In this drama the ending was cruel & sad. The writer could have come up with so many other happier endings, easier to just let the female lead die. I feel like I lost my time watching this drama, so much crying.

  20. I also don’t think the ending is good, I am already at Episode 9 and really looking forward to a good ending but it is disappointing. I won’t go on watching anymore even if I love Kim Tae Hee and and Lee Kyu Hyung

  21. Sorry but watch again, the voice of Min Jeong is Heard but they go to some effort to make sure the face is not shown. They could be leaving it open for a second season.

    “ She sees her parents and says, ‘mom, dad,’ and runs towards them. It seems that Kang Hwa and Min Jung worked things out and didn’t get a divorce.”

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