The family is arguably the most important institution in all societies. Growing up, we are taught to love and respect our family members to the fullest, no matter how bad things might get. Unfortunately, sometimes it just doesn’t always work out that way—bitter arguments can turn into serious fights, and those fights can turn into life-long grudges that ruin familial bonds forever. Read on for some heartbreaking stories that prove blood isn’t always thicker than water.
1. Wicked Sister
My parents disowned my oldest sister. Growing up, she always struggled more than us (she became a teen mom, partied a lot, etc.), but my parents helped her a lot. They do okay for themselves, but they had a no-co-signing rule for all six of my siblings and me. Still, they co-signed for her house so she could get a head start—a decision they’d soon regret.
She didn’t pay the mortgage for almost three years and my mom got served in front of all the other nurses at her work. My parents worked tirelessly to try to work out deals to help my sister keep the house, but because my sister never showed up for court dates, nothing worked. During this time, she paid $12K for IVF and got pregnant with her fifth kid.
When my mom demanded some of the money back, she falsely accused my dad and my brother of beating her sons when my parents took them to Disney World. She even threatened to file a report if he asked for money again. All of this was horrible, but things really came to a head during Christmas when she committed the unforgivable.
She punched my brother in the face during the meal for “humiliating” her oldest son by asking him if he wanted to work at his company for good pay. Her oldest son was in and out of prison, and my brother was just trying to help him after his release. Out of anger, she called 9-1-1 and told them my brother had dangerous goods in his truck.
They came on Christmas night and conducted a search, but nothing was found in his vehicle. Needless to say, she is not welcome anywhere near any of us. My mom still cries about it, but even she refuses to talk to her again.
2. The Prodigal Son
I was disowned, but I deserved it. I was an addict and a mess for a long time. My mom couldn’t keep bailing me out of trouble, and at some point, she couldn’t bear to watch me self-destruct anymore. I wasn’t living at home, so she came to see me one last time to tell me she was done and not to contact her. She didn’t want to have anything to do with me.
She was in pieces. I can’t imagine how hard it must have been for her, but it ended up being the best thing she ever did for me. Once she cut me off, my rock bottom came hard and fast. After a little while of living on the streets and my addiction consuming me, I made my way to a detox center, got a few days clean under my belt, and never looked back.
That was almost 15 years ago. After I was clean a little while I contacted my mom, and little by little we built a relationship again. Now we’re really close. I am forever grateful to my mom for letting me fall and letting me back into her life.
3. No Shame
While most of the family was at the funeral for my husband’s grandmother, his cousin broke into her house and took her checkbook. Meanwhile, on my side of the family, my cousin ransacked my aunt’s jewelry and tried to break into a safe in the house while said aunt was in the hospital on her deathbed. Honestly, how do these people live with themselves?
4. Daddy Issues
I disowned my father. I don’t believe it was nearly as difficult a decision as disowning a child, but it was tough. I grew up in an upper-middle-class, perfect nuclear family. My parents were high school sweethearts. My dad was an operator at an oil refinery, while my mom was an accountant turned stay-at-home mom. I am a middle child—I have an older brother and a younger brother.
When my older brother was about 10, my dad’s drinking got out of hand and he became extremely physical. My mom eventually divorced him after 23 years of marriage because she was afraid for our lives. After that, my dad went off the deep, deep end. He started doing substances, stealing…He was even involved in a few hit-and-runs.
My older brother, who had received the brunt of the physical misconduct, was manipulated into a relationship with him for a few years. To a lesser extent, so was I. He seemed to take an interest in us for the first time since we were little, but in hindsight, it was just more manipulation and gaslighting. We eventually got wind of just what kind of sketchy stuff he was involved in.
My little brother, who both had aspirations to get into law enforcement, cut him out of our lives completely. My older brother, on the other hand, took a while longer–he was a kid who always just wanted his dad to love him and so he was wearing blinders. He did eventually see the light, and he cut my dad out as well. Then, a few years later, my dad was living with his mom.
My grandma had been manipulated by him for years, and they had a symbiotic, co-dependent relationship…She was a prescription addict and he was an “everything” addict. My grandma had a reverse mortgage on her home. She was diagnosed with lung cancer and given six months to live, so she moved into a nursing home where she could be taken care of.
That’s when my dad really messed up. He kept squatting at her house, despite the bank coming to rightfully claim the home. The local authorities got involved and he was taken in. To make matters worse, grandma slipped and fell around the same time all of that was happening. She ended up developing a brain bleed and passed a few days later.
My dad had a seizure his first night behind bars and was brought to the hospital, where it was determined he had a burst brain aneurysm. The doctors theorized that the aneurysm was the result of his substance use, and when he was scuffling with the officers when he was being handcuffed, his increased blood pressure caused it to burst.
He’s now in a nursing home and functioning at about a six-year-old’s level. He has some inkling that he’s messed up royally and that it’s all his fault, but he really doesn’t understand the specifics. He can kind of communicate and hold conversations, but they’re bizarre and wander all over the place. A lot of very strange words make their way into his speech.
I visit him a few times per year. I only do it because the person he became with the addiction is long gone. I believe that karma caught up to him and that he’s earned his punishment. I truly would not shed a tear if he passed tomorrow—he’s been gone to me for a decade.
5. The Parasite
My biological father divorced my mom and left her with their three kids, basically bouncing out of our lives and making it clear that he wanted next to nothing to do with any of us when he left. Then, years later, at my older sister’s funeral, he had the gall to attend, I asked him why he did that and he said, “I thought it would be easier for everyone.”
He actually meant it was easier for him to run home to his wealthy family and enjoy second adolescence while my single mother worked two jobs to feed three kids under 10 with zero child support from him.
6. What A Witch!
My mother and her sister were both adopted into a great family. A few years ago, my grandfather fell ill and we were told to prepare to say goodbye, so the family gathered. My grandmother was having a hard time with her memory since she had a brain hemorrhage, but she welcomed my aunt into her home. Whilst my grandfather was in his final week, Wendy, my aunt, took my grandmother’s ATM card.
When my uncles found the bill, they became absolutely livid. My aunt had spent thousands of dollars on herself and even attempted to sell my grandmother’s car. The family tried to confront her about it, but she basically disappeared into the wind. At that point, the whole family had had enough. When my grandfather finally passed, we brought my grandmother to an attorney and had her write Wendy out of her will.
She didn’t press any formal charges because the whole process would have been lengthy and more painful for her. She didn’t need the extra stress. I’m pretty sure one of my uncles also threatened Wendy to make sure she stayed away from my grandmother, too.
7. A Ruthless Cycle
As Jehovah’s Witnesses, my parents disowned my siblings and me several times since we were in our late teens. One of the JW “rules” is that you are not to associate with others who know “the truth” but refuse to follow it, including family members. In other words, parents are encouraged to disown any children who have left the religion.
The first time was when I was 19. It upset me and I was heartbroken. They’d eventually changed their minds, only to do it again a couple of years later. Once it became a cycle, I stopped caring and no longer tried to be a part of their lives at all.
8. Hanging By A Thread
It’s really tough to love my son. He’s almost 14 and he’s currently out of our home at a treatment facility. He’s averaged two 9-1-1 calls a year for the last two years, and he’s attacked my wife, daughters, and the neighborhood kids several times. He ran away from school, ran away from home, and tried to push me off the roof of our house (after threatening to jump off and hurt himself).
We have become “that family” in our town where the local authorities are called to our home on a semi-regular basis. He’s been getting more violent as he gets older (not to mention bigger and stronger) and I honestly don’t see an end in sight. But there’s a key fact that I’ve been leaving out and it could explain a lot of his behavior—he’s been diagnosed as high functioning autistic and is also bipolar.
That’s like putting walls around a tornado and expecting it to stay inside the walls. A lot of what has occurred he had little control over because of the way his mind works. He’s constantly at battle with himself. My wife and I have tried desperately to give him the best life we can while keeping ourselves and our daughters safe, but I’m tired.
It’s been eight and a half years since we started going through this with him and I’ve been ready to throw in the towel on him for a while…But my wife refuses to let him go, so we wake up every morning trying to give him the best life for him and our girls.
9. Save The Children
My parents disowned my oldest sister. She had a horrible relationship with my father—it was so bad that she had her first baby when she was 16 years old, just to spite him. My father refused to give her money because she’d just keep getting pregnant (with a good-for-nothing boyfriend, no less). She constantly puts herself and the deadbeat before her kids.
My father would send money to girls for Christmas and their birthdays, but he’d never hear back from them, so he finally gave up. She’s 30, has six daughters, and lives in a mobile home in North Carolina. We hadn’t seen or heard from her until June of this year. My oldest niece contacted me asking if she could come to Florida (where I live) for the summer to get her and her sisters out of the trailer.
After I got my sister’s permission, I set up plane tickets and organized the rooms they’d be staying in. When they arrived, I was appalled at the sight of them—they were completely disheveled, clothes visibly dirty, and covered in swarms of lice that my white towels stained gray from removing them. My niece informed me that they had been without water and electricity for six months.
After that, as a family, we decided that the girls weren’t going back to North Carolina. We told my sister to come to my parents’ house in Florida to get back on her feet. She refused because we didn’t invite the deadbeat to come with her. Then, ironically, she found out that he had been cheating on her. She confronted him, but it ended with her getting kicked out of the trailer.
The deadbeat said, “I would rather be homeless than stay with you.” My sister now works for the dollar store and doesn’t pull her weight with kids. At least the girls are safe now…
10. Crooked Cousin
My aunt started showing signs of dementia at a relatively young age, so we moved her into an assisted living home. Our cousin (who bounces around jobs) was hired to visit her about once a week; to take her out to the mall or walk with her in the park, whatever. She was paid handsomely. One day, we got a shocking alert on our phones that sent chills up our spines.
Our aunt had a check bounce from her account that should have had $5K in it. Clearly, our cousin had drained the account, proven beyond a doubt with receipts. Turns out, she would take our aunt to a bank machine every Friday, withdraw $200, then charge us for hours that she didn’t actually spend with our aunt. The worst part? For some bizarre reason, her family took her side…
11. Two Sides, Wrong Coin
My father said my mother’s issue was that she had too many children and it gave her some kind of brain fever, much like a dog that loses its mind after having too many puppies. One time, my mother told me that my father felt trapped by me. Apparently, he had already been planning to leave before I was born, but then my mother got pregnant with me and he felt obligated to stay.
Now that I’m an adult with two kids myself, I think I realized that both of my parents are just extremely mentally ill and incapable of loving anyone, including themselves.
12. Political Divide
My mother is a QAnon conspiracy nut job and I called her out on her delusions. I told her I thought her ideology was dangerous and that she needed help. We even went to family therapy together. All this time, my dad seemed to be on my side, but after sitting in on a few of the sessions, he sent me a heartbreaking text.
He basically said that it wasn’t going anywhere and that they didn’t want to speak with me again. Since then, my parents have been bad-mouthing me to the rest of my very conservative family. I don’t know what to do or where to go. I understand how terrible my parents are, but my kids don’t and they are going to miss their grandparents. I’m not looking forward to telling them.
13. Officially Motherless
My mom’s plan was to divorce my dad, take his house, and live off the child support money. But when I turned 13, my mom realized she wasn’t making a dime off my presence any longer. Because she no longer had any use for me, I was kicked out at age 13. But the jokes on her—I’m successful now and when my younger brother had to stop giving her money due to his financial crisis job loss, guess who called to “reconcile” with me? I never returned her call.
14. Not My Family
My father almost attacked me with a butcher knife. If my ex-boyfriend wasn’t there, I probably would have but seriously hurt. I left my father’s apartment that day and never looked back. I thought that would be the end of my nightmare (my dad had been hurting me for years and I never told anyone), but it was just the beginning. When I left he told everyone that I had gotten pregnant and ran away with my boyfriend.
That absolutely did not happen, but they seemed to believe him anyway. I later found out that he’d been telling his family awful things about my mom and me for YEARS. Of course, who are they going to believe? I have no desire to be in contact with my family.
15. All For Love
When my great-grandmother is part Black like me, with tan skin and loose brown curls. She was born in Florida, but when things started getting bad for Black people in Florida, her family relocated to Texas. For those who don’t know, Creole people tend to play heavily into colorism. Although they are definitely mixed race, they prioritize light-skinned people.
The looser your curl, the lighter your skin, the more white you look, the better. Her parents had high expectations for her to marry a wealthy, light-skinned man who would take care of her. Instead, she met my great grandfather—a poor, dark-skinned man jumping from job to job working for farmers and trying to make a living. The two of them fell in love and they were just teenagers.
But her parents were not having it. They threatened to disown her if she continued seeing him, and like a rebellious teenager, she refused. They wanted her to do better. She wanted to be in love. They might have broken up eventually, but fate had other plans for them—she ended up getting pregnant, and they stayed together for the child.
Her parents basically said “you’ve ruined your life” and disowned her right there. In fact, the whole family disowned her. No one would speak to her—aunts, uncles, cousins; not a single person stood up for her. So she had no choice…The two of them moved to California so he could get a job picking oranges. Then, he built a house, and they had their first daughter. She was 16. She never saw her family again.
16. Fighting Demons
My older brother is a disowned child. He has been a petty crook for as long as I could remember; into hard substances since his pre-teens and pretty much a full-blown sociopath. He treated every girl in his life like meat. I remember him as a teenager calling his girlfriend derogatory names because she didn’t want to get intimate with him, but that was tame compared to everything else he did.
When he knocked another girl up years later, he had a daughter, and one of the first things out of his mouth in the hospital after her birth was: “She’s gonna grow up to be a failure like her mom.” Let’s just say that child is better off not having him as a father figure (she’s been adopted since then and is living a happy childhood, last time I checked).
He also treated my parents like trash. He would be in and out of prison, and they would take him in whenever he was out. Then he’d find a job, lose it, and somehow land himself behind bars again. He would get in physical fights with my mom, dad, and me, and he’d kick our dogs, cats, etc. We’d have to get new drywall to replace the holes he punched through those walls. Living with him was a nightmare.
But there was one incident involving him that was really the last straw for us. Not only did he walk out on his kid and her mother, but he also started a gang fight at our house over a shady deal gone wrong. Things got really violent and I’m pretty sure dangerous items were involved. He left the house, and on that very same night, he came back because he needed a place to stay.
When my dad said no, he started fighting my dad. I stepped in at that point and almost beat the heck out of him. It ended with my dad having to hold me down to stop me from ending him, and my brother walking away down the street. I haven’t seen him since. That was six years ago. At this point, he’s either in prison or worse. I may have every reason in the world to hate him for everything he’s done, but I don’t.
He’s a tortured soul who has let his demons get the absolute best of him, plain and simple. I just hope that he finds some kind of peace, even if it takes losing his life for him to do so.
17. Numb To It All
We adopted a three-year-old from foster care. He was the cutest, sweetest kid. He had a few issues, but we figured it was probably because of his history. The issues escalated quickly. When he was seven, he hit our dog with a golf club. We had to keep him away from our dog and our cat after that. But then the cat disappeared—we assumed she just got out and ran away.
Years later, we found out he had brutally ended its life and then just threw it in the woods. But that wasn’t even the worst part—the last straw was when he burned our home down. We sent him to a residential treatment center where he stayed for two years. During that time, he attacked a roommate and became extremely violent.
The insurance company told us that they wouldn’t cover him anymore and we’d either have to pay out of pocket ($40K a month) or bring him home. We have younger children and the second option just wouldn’t be safe. We ended up telling the state that we wouldn’t bring him home, so now we have a verified report against us (even though the therapists agreed with our decision).
I don’t love him. I wish the best for him, but I don’t feel anything toward him.
18. Love Is Blind
My father had this stupid witch for a wife. She was just terrible. She cheated on my father and left him after three years of marriage. He did everything for her and she just made him miserable. After she left, my father became really, really depressed, so I cared for him. I could only hope that he would get over the whole situation. We even fought the divorce together.
Eventually, he did get better and I was really happy for him. Then, one day, everything changed for the worse—she came back to him when she had no money left. He told me about it and I was so angry that he didn’t learn his lesson. I told him that I didn’t want to see her ever again and that I wouldn’t do anything for him as long as she was there.
When my father wanted to meet me for lunch one afternoon, I knew something was up. When I arrived, I saw her sitting there with him. I went to the table and basically said that she had to leave or I would. He got mad at me for that, so I left. I told him to screw off and never spoke to him again. I love my dad, but I can’t keep watching him make the same mistake with that horrible woman.
19. Oh, The Irony
I was just a weird mistake. My mother never wanted a child, so she bailed after a few months. My father became a single parent but ended up in prison (life without parole) when I was 14. Years later, I finally met my mother. She was an officer at the time I moved in with her. She threw me out after two months. I am 30 now, and life is typically a little weird around the holidays, but I always get a good laugh when I tell people that my father is in prison for life and my mother is in law enforcement.
It took a long time for me to come to terms with it, but I know now that none of it was my fault.
20. Secret’s Out
My mom got taken out of my grandparent’s will, and she only got to know so because of her sister. Her side of the family has always been very conservative and rather “communal,” so ‘til the end do us apart’ is serious business with them. She ran away for over a week without giving any notice, leaving me and my sister alone, only to come back with some stranger.
We couldn’t tell anyone they were living with us, as it was obvious things were about to get hairy. She eventually divorced him and remarried in the span of about six months, all while trying to keep everyone in the family out of the loop. But somehow, her secret got out, and when my family got word of what happened, chaos ensued.
When she wasn’t invited to the Christmas family reunion, she shamelessly used me and my sister as bargaining chips. They took away everything that was still in their name from her. She moved away, and only recently has she been trying to connect back.
21. Lopsided Love
My mom used to say that I didn’t love her. Each day, it got worse and worse. Slowly, it started getting to me, until soon enough, I really did stop loving her. She’s not a drinker, but there have been quite a few nights where she came home very intoxicated and said horrible things to my brother and me. She also lies often. I’ve caught her stealing my money for gambling and she wastes $200 to $300 weekly on lotto tickets.
She’s so irresponsible that she’s been fired from around six jobs in the span of two years. I get called many horrible names by her on a daily basis. But there’s one thing she does that really bugs me—after screaming at me during an argument, she’ll try to “make it up to me,” and when I’m not emotionally ready to reciprocate her affection, she goes full-on psycho and goes back to blaming our horrible relationship on me.
22. The Blame Game
When I revealed this family secret, my mother’s side disowned me (which was probably for the better). When I was a kid, my uncle took advantage of me repeatedly. It happened one summer when I was with my grandparents. It really messed me up, and it took years of therapy for me to finally accept that I’m gay. I’m still working on trusting men in general because the whole experience was so traumatic for me.
Anyway, when I was about 14, I told my mother about it because I just needed to get the secret out. I was about to be in a situation where I’d have to be alone with him again, so I was scared. Her response chilled me to the bone. She first apologized to me, saying she was sorry for sending me away that summer…but then she went to say that it was a shame the “family curse” got a hold of me as well.
That’s when I realized there was a cycle of physical wrongdoing in our family. I’d always hated her for letting this happen, but she had no way of stopping it or even knowing it’d happen to her son. It had always been something that happened to the girls but never to the boys. We went to the authorities, and because it had been so long ago and across state lines, there wasn’t much they could do. It was my word against his.
My mother’s family told me I should blame the devil for what happened to me, not my uncle. That was bad enough, but then they took it even further—they had the audacity to blame me for turning him gay, saying that I wanted him to take advantage of me and that I needed to repent for trying to destroy his life. My mother tried to argue back, but at that point, it was her family versus us two.
We got the heck out of there and never looked back. It’s been about ten years since I saw any of them. They blame my mother for raising a devil-loving son, and it didn’t help matters when I finally came out. The last thing they told us is that they’d let both my mother and I back in, if and only if, I admitted they were right and would take on conversion therapy to get straight.
I think they are still surprised I haven’t taken them up on their offer. I don’t know, and I don’t care. My family is super small now, and I couldn’t be more pleased.
23. Mother Doesn’t Know Best
My parents got divorced and my mother decided she didn’t want to be a mother anymore, so she neglected my siblings and kicked us out of her house. Because the court system favors the mother, she got custody and my dad had to give her the house and child support. Despite this, she didn’t do anything for us and we ended up living with him anyway. She spent our child support on world travels and wouldn’t ever buy us anything.
She eventually met a guy, sponsored him, and took in his son as her own. At that point, her biological kids, including myself, were nothing to her. But a shocking twist of fate would soon teach her a lesson—a few years later, they divorced, he took all her money, and she ended up completely homeless. She went off the deep end about a year ago and, despite the nightmare she put me through, I still tried to get her help.
When she still treated me like I was worthless, I decided to cut off all ties with her.
24. Silver Linings
My siblings and I have stopped interacting with our oldest brother. We found out that years earlier, he had taken advantage of at least two boys. He was an adult at the time. He showed no remorse and turned the story around to say that those boys were at fault. It was so disgusting to watch someone you grew up with treat people so poorly and show such a blatant disregard for others.
But the good news is that the remaining four siblings have become closer and we now are able to appreciate the good we see in each other. It’s true when they say that if you could pick your family it would look much different than it is!
25. You’re A Coward
I asked my biological father at 28 why he never tried to see me after he and my mom got a divorce. I always thought he just needed some time to gather himself after the situation, but it turns out, that wasn’t the case at all. His response broke my heart. He said he never wanted to try for any custody arrangement because that meant he would have to pay child support.
So essentially, the fear of child support led him to stop talking to his nine-year-old. He’s currently doing the same thing to my two younger half-sisters. Some people just really shouldn’t be parents.
26. The Sting Of Regret
My mom ceased all contact with my much older half-brother. He was a dangerous, angry addict who would sneakily take things from us and beat up his elders, including my mom. At one point, she had enough and let him go. He passed this year and his funeral was the first time my mom had seen him since she cut him off 15 years ago. I now have my own kids and I’ve always supported my mom’s decision. That said, I feel so, so sorry for her, more so than when I was just her kid. I can’t imagine ever reaching that point with my kids and I’m sure she never did either.
27. The World’s Biggest Jerk
My mother didn’t want kids, yet she never bothered to prevent having all three of us to different men. She tried to have my dad put in prison for taking advantage of her, even though he was the sweetest guy ever. He even worked two jobs to support us and would come home to a filthy house and my diaper completely loaded. Her worst moment, however, still makes my blood boil when I think about it—she tried to put all three of us in foster care, but luckily, my dad got custody of me along with my other half-sisters.
I last saw my mother when I was six because she had seen that my dad was successful and wanted to use him for money. He brought me to a park to meet her and she blatantly ignored me. He’s a smart man, so he realized she was just trying to take advantage of him and that’s the last time he ever saw her. She never sent one birthday card or ever paid a dime of child support to my dad. Congrats mom, you’re the world’s biggest jerk.
28. A Disturbing Situation
I have disowned my mother. She did everything from generally invading my siblings’ privacy to starving us. But what she did to me was absolutely unforgivable—she went so far as to orchestrate my attack and immediate pregnancy from her male friend because she wanted “cute little grandkids” and she didn’t want to wait. I was 13. It was a really messed up situation and I’m glad I’m out of there.
29. It’s No Use
My dad disowned my half-sister (his biological daughter). She had a fling with a guy, had her third child, and he beat her up and ditched her. She had her kids taken away from her because of the unsafe environment her boyfriend put the family in. She then turned to hard substances and shoplifting to deal with her depression. She was put into prison multiple times as a result, and she refused to go to her court dates.
This kept happening for a year until she finally told my dad she wanted to get help. He paid for her to go to rehab, but she didn’t go. She kept asking him for money and he just kept giving it to her, thinking she really needed it. Nope…she just kept wasting his money to get her fix. At one point, she went missing for a few days, and my dad was so worried for her.
When he finally found her, he broke down in tears. She had almost lost her life in Mississippi and even after she recovered, she still went back to doing substances. At that point, my dad had enough. He tried to help her for several years, but he just couldn’t anymore. She’s now in her 30s, and you just can’t force someone to get rehab.
30. Lost Time
I signed away my parental rights to my daughter. It sounds terrible, but here is the backstory—My ex-wife and I separated for a while, then we briefly reconciled. We had intimacy exactly once. We were working things out when she dropped some shocking news—she told me there was another man in the picture and that the kid wasn’t mine. She wanted a quick, clean divorce.
I refused to proceed with the divorce until the paternity was sorted out. We got a DNA test done and what do you know? It’s mine. I deployed to Afghanistan and when I got back, I finally got a hearing for the divorce setup. It took a judge’s order to finally allow me to see my daughter. She was already walking when I saw her for the first time.
Fast forward 1.5 years—I was flat broke, but still pushing myself to travel 600 miles on the weekends to see my daughter for just a few hours, if at all. The ex was pulling no-shows and showing up late for my scheduled visits. When my daughter called me her “other daddy,” I knew I didn’t have a chance. I knew that my ex was going to bad-mouth me and undermine me every chance she got.
I signed away my rights shortly thereafter. She is 16 years old now. Once she is 18, I’ll be able to contact her.
31. The Homewrecker
My parents disowned my brother for basically being a huge jerk. He took my mom’s expensive jewelry, $1,000 worth of my video games, and my dad’s tools that he uses for his roofing business and pawned them. He also used my parents’ vehicle as collateral for a loan that he defaulted on. But nothing beats his most recent offense…
Though this one isn’t all his fault, he had intimate relations with our family friend’s wife, causing them to break up. That family friend has been a crucial part of our lives for decades, and now they want nothing to do with us. Nobody in my family talks to my brother anymore after that.
32. The Wrong Thrills
My sister was disowned. She was a perfectly normal and happy person until she turned 16—out of nowhere, she joined a gang and started breaking into houses and stuff…She even took my things without permission on multiple occasions. The local authorities had her tested for substances a dozen times and she was always clean, so my parents figured it was a psychological issue.
They spent $10,000 for her to stay in a psych facility to try and find out if she had a mental disorder or had been abused since there was no indication of other underlying issues. One day, she demanded more money from my parents for a startling reason—she said that she needed to get rid of “another” baby. That’s when my parents lost it… no one had known she was ever pregnant, let alone multiple times.
They said that they would take the baby but she refused to go through with the pregnancy, so they cut her off then and there… and then it was like she literally never existed. I asked her why she was living her life that way the last time I saw her, and all she could say was, “Because it isn’t boring.”
33. Cut Her Out
My grandfather disowned his daughter-in-law and grandson after my uncle passed. His grandson’s widow reduced communication between the kid and my grandparents. A few months later, my grandmother passed., and that led to a total communication blackout. My grandfather would try to call every couple of weeks but he never got an answer.
He sent birthday and holiday cards to the kid, no response. After about five years of this, my grandfather took drastic measures—he cut them out of his will completely. The kid only got a tiny bit from my grandmother’s will since she still had him in there. She was not a great person, so while I’m sad my grandparents lost contact with one of their grandchildren, I’m glad that my grandfather didn’t have to deal with his son’s widow for the last few years of his life.
34. Stuck With Me
My mother would never answer this. At present, I am 32. Yes, I am divorced; but I do not see that as a failing. I make good money. I support myself. I live 2,200 miles from my hometown because it was a dump. In short, I see myself as a success. My father passed several years ago. He did the best he could. He loved me and he was proud of me.
My mother, on the other hand, was the opposite. In her eyes, I was an accident—I was born only 10 months after my sister. My father was Catholic and my mother was spineless. It was never planned, but they didn’t use birth control, so they were stuck with me. Eventually, she divorced my dad when I was four, and she took her anger out on me by mentally and physically hurting me every day that I lived with her.
I finally stopped speaking to her in 2015.
35. The Rabbit Hole
The son had a serious knee injury at age 16 in the late ’90s when the new pharmaceuticals were being sold as amazing non-addictive pain meds for all ages. I personally think he came out of the double knee surgery addicted. After that, he fell into drinking and using substances whenever he could get them. He begged and borrowed to get those pain meds.
At 18, he moved out because his parents were interfering with his life too much. One time, his mother was out of town on a business trip, so he kicked in her front door, took all her jewelry and anything else he thought he could sell or trade easily. Eventually, his parents paid for him to go to rehab and they called in all sorts of favors to get him into a vocational apprentice program.
He did okay for a few months…until he made one decision that ruined everything. He decided to take the general contractor’s tools from the warehouse and sell them to get money for substances. And just like that, he was back in the rabbit hole. To protect themselves, his siblings and his family friends basically disowned him. Everyone was warned to not let him into their houses, cars, or places of business for any reason.
It’s been an education. You can’t fix an addict. They can only do it themselves when they’re ready. Many will never be ready.
36. Fall Easy, Fall Hard
My high school friend is disowned by her parents and they have custody of her daughter. She graduated early from high school and they expected her to start college at 17. Then she got knocked up by her 25-year-old junior hockey player boyfriend, and all of her plans changed. The boyfriend promptly left town, leaving her no choice but to stay with her parents and go to community college while raising her daughter.
For a while, she was making it work, and it seemed like she would turn things around for herself…until she gave her parents a shocking update. There was a new man in her life; some trashy kid from Hawaii, and she dropped out of her degree program, quit her job, and moved in with him because she was “in love.” Her parents were understandably creeped out.
They refused to let her move to Hawaii with their grandchild to live with a guy they’ve never met. When she disobeyed them, the parents sued for custody. They are now her daughter’s official parents, and they haven’t spoken to her since.
37. Broken Trust
My mom practically disowned me because I was a complete jerk of a son. I did nothing crazy like physical or verbal misdeeds, but I would lie and take from her. I got into substances and started stealing from my siblings. But the final straw was when I betrayed my family in the most unforgivable act of selfishness. I took the rent money once and got the family evicted.
My mom gave me the boot and we didn’t speak for years until I finally got my life together. Even now, she holds me at arms distance, despite knowing that I’m fully clean. I have my own place and a great job with a loving family, but I did irreparable damage to our relationship. I know when we talk she wants to be more of a mother to me, but she closes herself off. I don’t blame her and I understand.
38. Rejecting The Faith
I can approach this from the other side. My parents have disowned me. I was raised as a Jehovah’s Witness and when I rejected the faith right after high school, they kicked me out. I didn’t know things were bad until I came home that day—all of the locks had been changed out. I was paying rent, so I had the local authorities come and tell them that I had to be let back in.
I lived at home for another month before being kicked out again. After that, I was homeless for a little while. The last time I spoke to my parents, I was telling them that I was getting married. They had no interest in attending.
39. The List
My son is a psychopath, and I mean that literally— from an unusually young age, he met every single criterion for ASPD. His behavior became increasingly aggressive, inappropriate, and alarming as time went on. Eventually, we made a startling discovery when looking in his room—he had documented a long list of incidents and offenses that he had committed against his peers and even close family members.
We informed the authorities, social services, and local mental health teams of everything we had found, and pushed for their help in stopping him and keeping everyone safe. He was placed into a secure home with constant supervision, and we’ve made it absolutely clear that we will never accept him back home. We cannot support him because of what he has done, and what he continues to do.
Our priority is protecting his victims and potential victims, and making sure everyone is safe and supported. He’s incapable of empathy, and he acts without consideration for others. He’s caused so much harm, but at the same time, he’s still our son…we love him and we don’t want any harm to come to him either (despite feeling like he would deserve it at times).
40. Hello, Hypocrite
My dad hated me for dating black men. He even started spreading some serious hate speech about me, his own daughter, around town. But here’s the kicker—he himself is a quarter black. So I disowned him for being disgusting, disrespectful, and generally out of his mind. Best decision ever.
41. Playing The Victim
My dad disowned my sister. She told him some personal things that he then blasted (in great detail) to his sisters. Instead of saying sorry, he tried to give her gifts, pretending as if nothing happened. It was a slap in her face, but it was also the perfect opportunity for her to enact her revenge. So she took the gifts, returned them for money, and donated it to Planned Parenthood in his name.
That doesn’t seem too bad, but given that he’s super Republican “pro-life,” it really got his blood boiling…so much so that she has since been taken out of his will. To this day, he refuses to be seen as anything but the victim.
42. Dark Thoughts
When I told my mother what my brother was doing to me, she didn’t say she didn’t believe me, but she didn’t do anything about it either. I know that she thinks that I’m lying because I’m so used to acting like nothing happened when I’m around him. I suffer from depression and even tried to end my life over it. I regret that I survived because I know I’ll never get well.
43. The Package
Five years ago, my daughter was put into prison for selling substances at a local music festival. After $15,000 in lawyer, bail, and miscellaneous fees, she accepted a plea deal and four years probation. A year after she was taken in, she was accepted at the private university where I work. All seemed to be going great…until the authorities caught her in a felonious act.
She was picking up a package at the post office—the package was from Germany and contained a disturbing amount of a substance. She’s been in the county for over a year now and her bail/bond is $20,000. I suffered a nervous breakdown over the whole situation, and following the advice my therapist gave me, I cut off all contact with her.
My husband and I still try very hard to provide for her, but all our efforts end up being pointless. She’s looking at spending the next 10 to 20 years in prison, so she’s basically disowned at this point.
44. Out Of Mind
I disowned my brother once. My brother has had a long history of substance use. Somehow, he managed to finish his degree, but then he switched to drinking. We were living together while we attended college and one time, he had a breakdown on me. I wanted to call the authorities, but my parents wouldn’t let me. Gradually, I let that incident slide.
Later on, my brother moved out to work, but he quickly messed up at his first career job. He moved back in with my parents and that’s when they discovered how bad his drinking problem was. They forbade drinks in the house, threatening to kick him out if they ever found any. Well, one night, my brother came home late at night, and he was completely hammered.
My parents were angry with him, and he matched their anger. They tried to calm him down, but it was too late—he started throwing heavy punches at my dad and we had no choice but to call 9-1-1. The authorities quickly arrived and took him away. At that moment, I completely decided he didn’t exist for me. I had no connection anymore.
I am very surprised to say that after a year of rehab, I was very slowly able to let him back into my life. It’s working out now and we’re close.
45. Liar, Liar
I disowned my younger sister after she claimed our older brother took advantage of her. She almost got him thrown in prison. When we found out the reason why she lied, we were floored. She made the whole thing up simply because she wanted to see if I still cared about her. She’s done other horrible things in the past as well, like stealing money from my mom, threatening to stab me (while she had the knife in her hand) because I wouldn’t let her borrow my art supplies, and sleeping around with her friends’ boyfriends at her school.
Oh, and she’s only 15, by the way. This has been going on for several years.
46. Cheaters… Prosper?
My ex-wife cheated on me with a close friend from my job during quarantine. Apparently, she’d been crying and making up sob stories to convince my family that I was the one who had cheated on her. When I found out what she’d been doing behind my back, I wanted to make the divorce clean. Two months later, I moved away for work only to find out a sad truth…
My family members were all still great friends with her and they took her side, believing that I was the cheater. The only blood relative who believes me is my youngest sister. It’s depressing.
47. A New Low
I was told by my mother that my general existence caused more problems than it solved, and I had two weeks to either leave or end myself. She didn’t care which one I chose to do, but if I ended myself, I needed to make it look like an accident or she couldn’t collect on my life insurance. She decided this needed to happen because I’m disabled.
48. Good Riddance
I raised my own sister for several years. I was a senior in high school when my parents had her—it was completely unexpected. They were 58 and 55. I never really got to know her much as I went away to college when she was five months old; plus, I was in the Air Force by the time she was a year old. The way life was working out, we just never really got time together.
Fast forward when she turned two years old and our dad passed—my stepmother stepped in to raise her. She was a terrible parent, so when my sister was 11 and begging for my help, I took a leave of absence and went to see her. When I got there, I was met with a huge surprise—the “stepmonster” was more than happy to get attorneys to draw up the paperwork for me to become my sister’s guardian, and even pay for it.
A few years went by and things were okay…until I caught her making these intimate videos online, talking dirty for creepy guys. It was a whole ordeal trying to get those videos down and suing the people who hired her to make them. Out of rage, she ran away, but then she was caught breaking and entering shortly after. A B&E charge at 14, for trying to take the phone of a boy she was dating to see if he was talking to other girls…
It happened on base and I managed to talk it out of being a bigger thing…but then she got a second B&E charge for breaking into the NCO club to sneak out bottles. I was told I had to leave the base at that point and that my security clearance was suspended to make sure she wasn’t putting me in a position where I could be compromised. Up until that point, I still tried to be there for her.
When she turned 18, she was accepted to RISD, graduated with honors, and had an actual decent-paying job at a web company. I thought she was finally trying to change for the better, but I was so, so wrong—she started getting high a lot, and eventually, she lost her job. She then dipped into her trust fund when she turned 24 and blew over $400K in two years, with nothing to show for it.
She also had multiple cases against her for possession. But the worst was when she got picked up by the local authorities for selling substances out of state. While awaiting trial, she was caught holding enough packaged goods to receive a distribution charge. By then, I hadn’t heard from her for almost seven years and only managed to keep up with her life by reading the law enforcement blotter.
Somehow, she was out of prison in under three years. I heard she dimed a bunch of people out to make it happen. She showed up at my house, asking for a place to stay. I said I couldn’t have her in my house, but I’d get her a place for the night and then help her find a place of her own. I thought that was a fair offer, but she seemed to think otherwise. Later that night, she came up with a plan that pushed me beyond my limits.
She broke into my house, trying to spin some story that she was looking for something she dropped inside earlier that day. When I told her she had to go, she threatened to call DCFS and tell them I was hurting my kids if I didn’t go with her to an ATM and give her all the money I could withdraw. I told her to get the heck off of my property before I exercised the castle defense law and dropped her.
I took out a restraining order the next day, and in doing so, I found out that she once again left the state and violated her parole. Back to prison, she went. Since then, she’s been dead to me.
49. Salt In The Wound
I have been legally disowned by my father. When I was 11, my mom was diagnosed with terminal cancer (it was her second diagnosis in four years) and he did not want to look after her like he did before. He also had a new girlfriend, and he had no issues leaving us to take care of her family. He was out of our lives for years. Then, a few years later, my mom passed. My brother, grandmother, and I met up to discuss who I was going to live with.
At that point, I felt excruciating sadness knowing that I no longer had parents, but I hit a new low when my father showed up out of nowhere with a heartbreaking declaration—he announced that he was in the process of legally emancipating himself from me. He went out of his way to legally declare that I was no longer his child, just so that my brother or grandmother couldn’t seek child support.
Needless to say, it stung coming only days after my mother’s funeral.
50. Gone Away
My ex-wife disowned my son. We both married young when I was in the army and she became pregnant six months into our marriage. I don’t think she connected with him at all after he was born. The most she did with him was take Instagram photoshoots where she painted herself as the #1 mommy. When he turned there years old, I left the army.
A year after that, she ran for the hills. I remember it like it was yesterday. I sat down with her at a local restaurant to talk about divorce plans. We split all of our financials and material items down the middle. When we finally got to the custody issue (something I dreaded to discuss because fathers never gain custody in my area), she caught me off-guard with her shocking response: “I want absolutely no responsibility.”
I asked her if she was sure, and she was. That one sentence hurt me more than anything else. My biological father wanted nothing to do with me and now I was seeing it happen with my own child. I received full custody and she remarried a year afterward. Her parents try their best to be a part of his life, but she herself still avoids him. He’s seven now and he’s used to it.