Idek – Meaning, Origin and Usage

Did a friend text you 'idek' in a message? They're probably commenting on your outlandish behavior. This post unpacks the meaning and origin of this expression.


The abbreviation 'idek' is a text-based acronym meaning 'I don't even know.' Most people will use it after someone says or does something silly or stupid.

'I don't even know' refers to 'I don't even know what to think,' meaning that you're in a state of shock, awe, or surprise at someone's actions or words.

'Idek' means that you are at a loss to explain something to someone. Or, it can mean that you genuinely don't know what they're talking about or what they mean.

Example Usage

"That was the dumbest thing I've ever seen. Idek what I'm doing watching TikTok videos at 3am in the morning. Doom scrolling is a real thing."

"Wow, that was racist. Idek what to do with you after that. Oh well, let me introduce you to the block button. Goodbye."

"Amazing. That's the most idiotic thing I've ever read. Idek how to reply to that. I'm shocked. You're such a muppet, and, surprisingly, you don't cop a Darwin Award with that."

"Idek what she was thinking. That was some wild ish, and there's no way I'm going anywhere near her after that."

"So, idek how to handle all this. There are so many people demanding my attention, and I feel like I'm stretched thin at the moment."

"Please, idek what you're doing with this. Just go away and leave me out of it. I want nothing to do with you."

"Idek what you were thinking. Do you ever stop to consider the consequences of your actions? That's just being selfish, don't you agree?"

"Idek what's going on with him right now. That guy has no clue about the damage he's doing to his family and his mental health."

"You know, idek. I have no idea how to take that or how I can ever face you again. I've wasted so much time on you, and you send me that? It's unacceptable. We're done here."


The expression ‘idek’ originates from texting in the early 2000s. It’s part of the original set of acronyms developed by text users before the advent of QWERTY keyboards. During the early years of text, people would use the number keypad to write out words, pressing the number button several times to land on the character they needed in the message.

This frustration led to users abbreviating common terms, such as ‘laugh out loud’ turning to ‘lol.’ Despite the invention of the QWERTY keyboard and predictive text, many acronyms still remain in use today, including ‘nbs.’  The acronym ‘nbs’ first appeared in the Urban Dictionary in February 2004. It’s a popular term in texting, direct messaging, and online chatrooms.

Similar to Idek

  • Ideka. (I don't even know anymore).
  • Idefk. (I don't even f**king know).

Phrases Opposite to Idek

  • N/A.

What is the Correct Saying?

  • Idek.
  • I don’t even know.

Ways People May Say Idek Incorrectly

You can use 'idek' in informal text-based communications. Using it in professional writing is improper and might annoy the recipient. For instance, using it when emailing your boss would likely have them reprimand you for using slang abbreviations in professional communications.

Acceptable Ways to Phrase Idek

You can use the acronym 'idek' in text conversations with friends. It suits informal communications with other people you know. You'll use 'idek' to tell the person you have no idea what they're referring to. Or you could use it as a confirmation statement when discussing someone's behavior. Typically, you'll use the acronym after someone does something silly or stupid.

'I don't even know' is a reactionary statement about someone else's behavior. For instance, they could type something in the chat that people find offensive. You could pile into the comments with other users to troll the person and use it to describe your shock at the OP's behavior.

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