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WMG for Mama, the 2013 horror film.

Mad Edith had been assigned male at birth.
That's why she was put in the asylum, as being transgender was considered a mental illness in the 19th century. She kidnapped a baby that she loved and considered her own before jumping to her death. When she returns as a ghost, she then adopts Lily and Victoria for the same reason she adopted the other baby: to have the children she was biologically unable to have. Which is also why she was so quick to smash the baby's corpse when Lily screamed out for her in the climax. It wasn't her biological baby, and she had grown a bigger attachment to the girls.
  • Except if she were really biologically male, it's highly unlikely that she would have been called by a female name back then since no one would even acknowledge such a thing. They probably would have recorded her as male with a male name since they'd think her wanting to be female was just a delusion.

Edith had Marfan Syndrome
It would explain her appearance (at least of her body) in life, since her appearance as a ghost isn't just the result of "ghosts need to look weird"— that's really how she looked. Plus, when the actor has the same condition, it's hard to separate it from the character.
  • Actually, it could be that maybe Edith had both Down Syndrome and Marfan Syndrome.
  • Javier Botet, the actor who played Mama/Edith, actually does have Marfan Syndrome. Relatively little CGI was used for most shots of Mama. The long limbs and fingers and odd range of motion are all Botet.
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Edith did not have a recognizable medical disorder. She was related to Fuchi from the manga of Junji Ito.
Edith greatly resembles Fuchi, the monster woman from several Junji Ito shorts - Rumors, Fashion Model, and Secret of the Haunted Mansion (picture here). The tall stature, long limbs and digits, elongated head, lantern jaw, slitted eyes, and slash-like mouth are features shared by these two supernatural females.

Further, if Edith's dream sending is accurate, she had her draining, corruptive touch even before she became a ghost. Perhaps Fuchi and Edith spring from a common source - an Ur-hag mother spawning female monsters and monsters-to-be across the world and throughout history.

Edith was never a human being.
Based on the above WMG, Edith was not a person at all during life, but a swarm of moths functioning as a hive mind and taking on a human form. Her ability to drain the life from the world was the way in which the moths fed. Although able to imitate a human being for the most part, the swarm of insects that made up "Edith" found itself unable to perfectly mirror a human form or simulate human behavior. As a result, "Edith" was institutionalized under the rather logical assumption that she was just a very ill person rather than a swarm of sapient moths.
  • Perhaps Edith was related to the Slender Man? Tall and gangly, with long thin arms and legs, and a penchant for carrying children away...

Lily was Dead All Along.
Think about it, a one year old child being raised by a ghost and her three year old sister? If she were to get sick, she'd die, and if you look at the pictures at the beginning of the movie, you clearly see her puking. Also, she's never shown sleeping in the movie (but she pretends to) and she eats moths. Mama's ghost magic was keeping her alive, but when Mama realized she was a ghost, she took Lily with her. That's why when they cocoon-bombed off the cliff, Lily didn't leave a corpse. And the response to Annabel's breath? Ghosts subconsciously desire human contact, Lily is as attracted to the living as Mama is.
  • This does somewhat explain the ending in that she crosses over, when technically, supernatural means aside, she shouldn't be able to do that, along with the fact she doesn't leave behind remains (odd are)
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