Every family has a skeleton or two in the closet—but few are as dire, disturbing, or devastating as the ones that these Redditors came forward to reveal. From hidden marriages and illegitimate children to bizarre plots and more, these wild secrets are enough to make even the most dysfunctional family you know seem normal.
1. Red Flags As Far As The Eye Can See
When I was 15, I found out my dad was cheating on his second wife with his third wife. I didn’t tell anyone because I was really close with my stepmom and didn’t want to lose her. When I was 18, she finally figured it out and left him. He got engaged to third wife a few weeks after the divorce was final. To this day, 25 years later, third wife refuses to acknowledge that he was married while he was dating her for four years.
She won’t even let herself see it and he’s a master manipulator. I once mentioned that he and my ex-stepmom built a house in 1992. His third wife blew up at me that I was wrong because she met him in 1991 and he must have been already separated. Like, look at the auditor’s page if you don’t believe me. People tried to tell her before they got married but she would always freak out at them.
She knows he lies to her constantly but never considered that he lied about that. Instead, she’s the victim and she’s a good Christian and we’re all mean and going to burn. PSA: if you have been dating a man who has children for six months and you haven’t met the kids, he’s married. If it goes on for four years…you just don’t want to know.
2. Unanswered Questions
One time, my stepfather shouted at my mom that he had been looking for a way out of the relationship for ten years. He didn’t know I could hear. I was ten years old at the time. I spent the first few years of my life living with my mom and bio dad, meaning that my mom was with my stepdad for at least part of the time she was with my dad.
Clearly, they had something together that my stepdad couldn’t just walk away from. Years later, in my 20s, my mom had been drinking or something and was bashing my stepdad. They had divorced by this point. That’s when she said something I’ll never forget. She referred to him as “The sperm donor, since that’s the only thing he ever did for us”.
She was talking about my stepdad, not my dad. I’m in my 30s now. We lost my dad years ago, my stepdad is out of the picture. My mom has cleaned up her life…but I have these memories. I’m pretty sure my mom and dad divorced because she cheated on him, and I don’t know for sure who my real dad is. I’m not even sure my brother is my full brother.
Whatever happened back then, though, my bio dad knew, and he never said anything, but I had no doubt in my mind that he loved me and in my mind, he will always be my father.
3. One In Five Odds
My mom and dad had a child out of wedlock—gasp!—in college. My dad’s parents pressured them to give her up for adoption. They eventually got married and had four more kids. I’m now 30 years old and just found all of this out. It blows my mind, and my oldest sister and I are now Facebook friends. She seems to have grown up in a very happy home.
I hope she doesn’t constantly wonder why they gave her away and kept their other four children. It makes me a bit sad.
4. Showing Her True Colors
My grandfather’s brother married young and suddenly passed from cancer at age 22. No one liked his wife but couldn’t put a finger on why. People began to figure out what kind of a person she was when she wouldn’t visit him in the hospital during his treatment. He passed within a month or two, and the cherry on top was the funeral.
She showed up dressed for a night out, wearing heavy makeup and the expensive fur coat my great-grandma gave her as a wedding gift. She then went on to hook up with two men in the basement of the funeral reception. The family never saw her again. Not dark, but despicable. I still don’t know her name, she’s unmentionable on my dad’s side.
5. I’m The Secret
Not exactly my family since I don’t know them, but my father’s. He got my mom pregnant when they were shortly out of college and broke down completely at the idea of having a child. He moved to NYC for work, got married, had children etc. His wife, children, siblings, and mother have no idea I exist. He’s a VP for a large financial institution, so he’s pretty wealthy and seems pretty important.
He would pay unofficial child support every month with checks sent from his work address until I turned 18.
6. Try Keeping Track Of This One
My dad cheated on my mom since I was 5. They got divorced when I was 9. He got remarried when I was 12. That was his third wife. I am now 17. I went to visit my dad over the summer only to find out he is cheating on his fourth wife (my stepmom) with two separate women. I didn’t have the heart to tell my stepmom upfront so I started to drop little hints.
Dad caught on. He tried bribing me to not tell his wife. Bad idea. I took the money but told her anyway. They are now getting divorced. She was not fazed by any of it. But that’s not the most twisted part. I found out a year ago she is now sleeping with my dad’s brother. She got pregnant. My dad and his family don’t know. Even my uncle doesn’t know.
I’m the only one that knows besides her and her sister. I found out by accident when I came to check in on my half-siblings. My dad is supposedly their biological father, but my ex-stepmom has custody of them. I have blackmail on my ex-stepmom for all of this. I only found out because of snippets of conversations I’ve heard while at her house checking on my siblings.
She also has a bad substance misuse problem. How do I know this is all true? I confronted her about it last week. She’s threatening to sue me if I tell anyone—even though my case would definitely win in court with all the evidence AND past court battles with her. I threatened to call CPS, she called it a bluff. I called CPS. My dad now has custody of his kids.
So they do DNA testing and make a disturbing discovery. Only one of the six kids is actually his, but he’s been their father figure for the majority of their lives so he treats all of them like his own. He is actually a good dad, but isn’t the best at being a loyal partner. The fact that this whole ordeal started when I was five when my dad cheated on my mom and just recently came to a close without any of our family knowing except a few people says a lot.
7. Playing Both Sides Of The Coin
My grandfather faked a burglary to get my father thrown behind bars. Cash and my grandfather’s coin collection were “stolen”. On the night of the burglary, my dad had a strong alibi because he was working the whole night long as a barkeeper and about 75 people had seen him there. But even knowing this, my grandfather won’t stop suspecting my dad.
About one year later, my grandfather gave my uncle the stolen coin collection. This event split my family into those who believe my grandfather and hate my father (my great-grandparents) and those who believe my father and hate my grandfather (the rest of my family).
8. The Truth Hurts
I see a lot of stories about people finding out that their parents weren’t the people raising them, and this one is a little bit different. My dad always thought his father who raised him wasn’t his biological dad, and the father thought the same. He was treated terribly by his father because the father was told he couldn’t have children and my father was born prematurely (but at a healthy weight).
So, everyone assumed my grandmother had an affair and got pregnant with my dad. It was to the point that after my grandmother passed on, my grandfather failed to even mention to his new wife that he had a son and grandchild (me). Years later, my dad gets an AncestryDNA test for him and me. He actually finds out that his dad was, in fact, his biological father.
It was shocking and sad.
9. Nice Try?
When I was 2½, nearly three years old, my mom divorced my biological dad. Once the paperwork was finalized, my mom had my great-granddad come down from Georgia to Florida and load up his truck and her car with what she could carry. Afterward, she went out to look for a place to live, look for a job, and do other stuff to get established in Georgia.
She left me in their care for nearly a year, coming down on the weekends to play with me and give them a bit of a break. My great-grandmother thought the world of me—but her motivations were seriously dark. She’d always wanted a son and saw this as a golden opportunity. She tried to claim my mom abandoned me, even going as far as cooking up the classic “baby in the bassinet on the front porch” story.
She even tried roping my grandmother into it. Unfortunately—or fortunately—she didn’t have any solid evidence. My grandmother refused to take part in it, as she knew there was no solid evidence to back up her claims.
10. “The Incident”
So my parents weren’t much home when we were growing up, both worked long hours and had to travel a lot as well. So mostly it was just me, my brother, and the designated au pair we had employed at the given time. My brother and I were terrible siblings back then, I think we were too alike in the worst ways as kids—it would lead to fights.
Every once in a while, it would maybe go a step too far, like him giving me a concussion or the like. But as I always remembered it, we’d usually just move on without it ever becoming a “big deal”. Our family is one where “keeping the peace” is alpha and omega. But when I turned 18 or 19, my mom gave me this long handwritten birthday card apologizing that “that ever happened”.
It talked about how crushed our au pair was at the time, how heartbroken she herself had been. But here’s the thing. To this day, I have ZERO idea what “that” was, and I don’t want to know. I’m scared it will make me look at my family different or that happy childhood memories could be tarnished. I’m pretty sure it’s something about my brother and me.
I know it’s not what I’ve personally always defined as “the real violent episode,” because we were in our teens then and had no au pair—but it’s weird knowing you have memories that you don’t have access to.
11. Can’t Outrun This Problem
My dad was a high school teacher and slept with multiple female students. Pathetic and cliché. We relocated several times because this happened in a number of small towns and several girls’ relatives threatened him. No formal charges ever—he was fired from one school but able to continue teaching in another, as this was the 80s. My mom finally took me and left.
Me being a kid, didn’t find out details until later. He never knew I knew. What a surprise to learn that he had a pending harassment lawsuit where he taught when he passed on suddenly in his mid-50s.
12. Some Things Are Impossible To Live With
My mom is schizophrenic. We’ve dealt with it since we were kids. It was an absolutely horrible childhood and we (the kids) knew it was wrong, all of it. Most people thought she was odd or “eccentric” but they didn’t see everything. Just that 15-minute glimpse of people you see when you meet them. Now in my mid-40s, dealing with her in her mid-70s, I have no sympathy. I have nothing but hatred and disgust.
All of us kids feel the same but the rest of the family and her friends all feel sympathy for her and feel like “something went wrong” later in life. But we all know, us kids. We had to live through it. Every horrible episode, every scary disturbing freakout. Every time she literally pulled her own hair out or smashed her head into the wall until she knocked herself out.
As kids (me at 4 years old, being the youngest) we cleaned her up and covered her in a blanket for when she woke up. Yup. That’s the secret. Or maybe the secret is when she dies all of her kids will breathe a heavy sigh of relief and finally move on with their lives as if a giant weight has been lifted.
13. The Family Curse
Apparently, my family is cursed. Back in the day, my grandparents made these friends in New Zealand. One day when my grandparents went over and they were getting ready to go, the friends insisted that they take a photo of them. My grandparents felt uncomfortable and tried to get out of it, but the friends insisted. They made my grandpa hold a lily and my grandma hold another and cross the lilies over so they were in an x shape.
In my culture, or at least what my family believes, is that lilies are a symbol of death and photographs are believed to capture a part of the soul forever. The friends took the photograph, and from then on, our family has been stricken with tragedy. My grandparents went through a nasty divorce, their two children (my mum and aunt) have had horrible lives.
We’ve had many deaths, and my upbringing was miserable as well. My grandma believes that our family is broken apart and our story is tragic because of what happened that day in New Zealand.
14. Missing In Action
My aunt disappeared. There were three kids, all went into the forces. One Navy, one Army, and this aunt went Air Force. Only she didn’t. Her mother says she dropped her off at the base, but there’s no record of her ever actually entering the Air Force. And then most of the family just never saw her again. I’ve only seen her once, just randomly in my other aunt’s (her sister’s) house.
It seems like her siblings know what happened, but they aren’t sharing.
15. Stolen Valor
During a conflict in my country, my grandmother’s sister paid doctors to falsify the documents so that her son didn’t get conscripted—but it was all for nothing. While working at a store one day, it was hit by a bomb and he didn’t make it. His sister then paid the doctors to falsify documents to say he lost his life on the battlefield.
His wife and child then got all veteran benefits: an apartment, instant acceptance to any high school and university, a large monthly allowance that allowed his wife not to work. The wife never remarried, since the benefits will be lost if she did, but she lives with a guy in the apartment she got from the government. She claims he is only her friend even though they have two grown children together.
Both her and my grandma’s sister, who go to all meetings and events, claim their loved one lost his life protecting our country. They are disgusting and even my cousin, who is the child of the deceased guy, doesn’t talk to them. I tried reporting them once, because I am sick of their attitude, like they are these saints who lost a loved one and are spitting in the face of the real veterans.
My mom served and didn’t get any benefits since she, luckily, got out unharmed. Two days later, they came knocking on my grandma’s door to complain about me and harassed her. Apparently, they have someone in the government who has been protecting them. So I and the rest of my family just avoid them, to spare my elderly grandma the trouble.
16. If They Only Knew
My mother and I did a DNA/ancestry kit and she had two first cousins she didn’t know about pop up. So when I asked my great aunt (sister of the cheating uncle) who these people were on our ancestry list, I was told her brother had an affair and had two children with another woman and that the other adult children and their offspring on our side of the family do not know about this.
She asked me not to tell them. So they have a half-brother and sister they do not know about, basically. What really ticks me off is that they are so holier-than-thou Mormon types. It’s sickening. I have kept my mouth shut only because I don’t know these cousins very well anyway, so don’t feel comfortable telling them this info. They may not even believe me!
17. The Changeling
I was helping my dad take my mom’s clothing to charity after her funeral. We parked in the driveway, he asked me to wait, and that’s when he made a shocking confession to me. They’d kidnapped me at birth. You know, it was never discussed, but there would be comments when my dad was angry. He said he wanted me to know due to medical history, but maybe he just wanted to confess.
They would always dodge questions I had about family medical history. Their baby had died the day it was born, and they “replaced” it…with me.
18. Swingin’ Around The Age Gap
My aunt has had multiple affairs with different men and women ever since she remarried. my cousin found out and told my uncle. He forgave her, but she’s still doing it to my knowledge. It makes sense though—my uncle is a 70-year-old man and my aunt is 54. I never thought it was true love!
19. Just When I Think I’m Out…
One of my uncles is part of a kind of Mafia. The authorities were after him for trafficking offenses, so he ran away and changed his identity. Later, his case got cold and he got his identity back, but it all messed with his mind—and the consequences were devastating. He decided to “take revenge” on the family for “not supporting” him while he was on the run—even though literally no one could have done anything about it.
He messed up my father’s life anytime he tried to help, over and over again, until my dad gave up and cut contact. The guy tried to swindle whoever he could and used his own children in his schemes. He would often brag about how he was defending a certain Mafia/gang from my state—because guess what, on top of being a criminal, he’s also a lawyer! No one ever had the evidence to report him.
But his quest for vengeance didn’t stop there. He then organized a burglary of the family business, and messed up my father’s retirement plan by disappearing with one of his work registers—which was the only proof of a company he worked for before everything got digitized, the company went under before the records were saved.
Also, my family is pretty much convinced that the latest burglary from my dad’s work, and even an “accident” in which my dad thankfully wasn’t hurt, were this uncle’s misdeeds. Everything points to him, but there’s nothing to show as evidence—almost as if he wanted us to know he did it, but made sure we couldn’t prove it.
He also tried to take advantage of my younger maternal aunt. He offered to take her to a show or movie, then my mom commented something like: “She’s only 14, so she needs to be back home at 8 PM”. My mom and aunt have a 20-year gap, so my mom often looked out while my grandma worked. His reaction was seriously telling. He got enraged and offended that my parents wouldn’t allow him to take her to his home as the movie/show would end up late.
My parents thought his reaction was very odd and asked what the problem was, but he refused to say. That was the moment it clicked he probably thought of trying something with my aunt, so it was immediately called off until he explained himself. He played the victim and misunderstood man who tried to help out and got wrong to the family, but after that, my dad cut contact completely.
My grandma tried to advocate and defend him, to make my father go back, but he never did. Then, a few years ago, after he finally got his hands in the family business, the rest of the family saw his true colors. He fired every family member, buried the company in debt, refused to pay his own parents, and started to purposely annoy my grandfather knowing his heart can’t take it, almost as if he was trying to end his life sooner.
Then, it finally dwelled on my grandma why my father refused to let him back in our lives. My little sister had never seen him until my grandpa’s birthday and she literally looked at his face and said: “He looks like a mad man who would do anything for his own profit”.
20. Do As I Say, Not As I Do
My great-grandfather was a married Methodist Pastor with his own children. He knocked up a parishioner and then eventually went on to legally adopt this single mother’s “illegitimate” child and then sent the mother away so she wouldn’t be part of my grandfather’s life. He grew up thinking he was adopted and not knowing who his real mother was.
I don’t know the details, but eventually, he must have found out. As a child, we’d do a once-a-year visit with my grandparents to see some old lady they just called a “family friend” who lived alone in a nursing home—but she was his mom. Chuck folk…so righteous.
21. Hiding The Truth
I’m a male in my mid-50s and I’ve never known who my father was. I was 27 years old when I went to visit the man I thought was my father and he told me I wasn’t. My mom and him divorced when I was 2 years old and I have no memories of ever living with him. I saw him once when I was in the fourth grade at a funeral and then again when I was in the seventh grade at another family member’s funeral.
The next time I saw him was when I was 27 years old, and that’s when I found out he wasn’t my father. My mom always said things like you’re not missing anything with him, be glad he’s not in your life etc. All along she was protecting HERSELF. After I found out the man I thought was my father wasn’t, when I asked my mom about it, she simply wouldn’t talk to me about it.
Not one word, at all, ever. I’ve never seen a picture of my real father, never known even his first name etc. She won’t tell me who he is.
22. A Happy Ending After All
My grandpa cheated on my grandma, left my dad and aunts and grandma in the state we live in now to join a biker gang with the woman he cheated with, ended up selling a load of illicit substances in Florida with her, got caught, and sent to prison. But the story doesn’t end there. Once he got out, he ended up going back home with the woman he cheated with and finally met his kids again 7-8 years later.
I do love my grandpa though, and as for the woman he cheated with? My other “step” grandma? Not sure what that term would be, but I love her very much as well and refer to her as mamaw.
23. The Final Straw
My uncle has an illegitimate child that lives around the block from one of my cousins. My uncle back in the day was known for having affairs and even had one with one of his students and went to prison for a bit because of it, but the child isn’t from the student affair. Everyone but my aunt knows about the child, but even after a few instances of cheating she would never leave his side because she loves him too much.
Everyone stays hush-hush about it because they know the child would weirdly enough be the straw that breaks the camel’s back. I know what you’re thinking, she may know but she doesn’t. I had to threaten my uncle with the issue in order for him to stop taking advantage of my mom’s kindness and treating her house like a yard sale and soup kitchen.
Needless to say, he hasn’t been over to my mom’s house since our talk. My cousin (his child) tried to defend him and I shut her down quickly letting her know I said what I said, if he approaches my mom’s yard and starts stealing and trying to use her in any way I’m releasing the kraken. This all happened during the month when my mom lost her husband in 2020.
The family started treating her insurance check like it was theirs. Always with their hand out, but not wanting to do the same.
24. Passing Down The Trauma
My grandma was 16 when she got pregnant with my dad, 17 when he was born. Her family ousted her and dumped her at a cloister under the pretense of going to visit another relative. She was blindfolded when she went into labor. My dad was a premature baby, and they took him away immediately without even letting her see or touch him.
My great-grandparents raised my dad for the first few years until she was allowed to come back and returned him. She had married my biological granddad by then. But my father remained an unwanted child. His upbringing was resentful and cold, while his little sister, my aunt, was doted upon. It has reflected heavily on how my brother, sister, and I were raised, with the exception that my dad didn’t play favorites.
He never beat us, and he was a reliable supporter of the family in financial terms, he did better than my grandparents, but the psychological stuff has shaped all three of us. We’re all fine on the outside, we have jobs, our own places, pay our bills, and our taxes. But all three of us are still dealing with issues that stem from our childhood and upbringing.
I don’t resent my dad anymore, he has gotten a lot better and he is a very dedicated grandpa to my nephew. I even get defensive of him when someone outside the family criticizes his parenting, seeing as his upbringing has shaped him too. The psychological stuff has stopped, and we get along well nowadays, things are good. But there was I time I secretly hated him, and I know my brother and sister did too.
25. The Proof Is In The Pudding
My grandma got pregnant and married her first husband at the age of 18 to escape her parents. My mom says they were good grandparents, but all four of their kids are messed up in different ways—so I don’t know how good of parents they could have been. Anyway, by the time my grandma was 21, she was a single mother of two boys.
She remarried, had my mom, and was single again by the time she was 27. It’s well known in the family, but is not spoken about.
26. Say Cheese
I was 29 when I lost my dad in 2020, he was 51. Shortly after, I found out my family’s horrible secret. My grandfather got my aunt pregnant with my cousin/uncle who is almost 40 years old. My entire life, he’s (granddad) been a heavy drinker. I never truly had a relationship with him seeing as how my dad wasn’t really one to put up with his garbage.
Recently, he passed on—and the day of his funeral was something out of a scene from a comedy. The hole wasn’t dug when we showed up to the cemetery. The family wanted to have lunch at Cheddar’s and ended up waiting over an hour just to get drinks. Another hour and a half for food to show up—one plate at a time in 15-minute intervals.
A few unhappy cousins started getting into verbal exchanges with staff over lack of service. At 2 pm, myself and a few uncles go back to watch granddad actually get lowered into his hole while the rest of the family stayed at Cheddar’s. And the finale ended with us going back to Cheddar’s to find that some of our family STILL hadn’t received food.
This moved on to arguing with the manager, who ended up comping unknown quantities of appetizers, drinks, and some actual meals. The whole day I couldn’t help but ask myself in my head “I wonder who all knows what he did”? and “How the heck could someone like this outlive someone as awesome and loved as my dad”?
27. Lesson Learned?
My dad was born during the Depression, and they couldn’t afford to have him—he was unexpected and had two older brothers—so my grandmother told my grandad no more makin’ babies. Well…he cheated, and it cost him his life. He slept with a married woman. That woman’s husband shot him, and he didn’t survive. My grandmother and her three sons were extremely poor without him, around and my father’s life for the next decade was awful.
28. Hiding From More Than Secrets
My grandfather had a secret that he took to his grave. I know it happened when he was young. He was the most compassionate and loving man I have ever known. He has never shied away from his past—except for one thing. I asked him about it once he said the authorities were looking for him but that “it was taken care of”. He said he told my grandmother once and based on her reaction, he said he never tell anyone again.
Based on what I know of his past, I believe he took someone’s life while under the influence. I believe this because of the movie The Apostle. He couldn’t finish it and got extremely emotional over it. He was a pastor for 55 years it seemed like that movie hit him on a deep personal level. Whatever it was, he had made peace with it. In his youth, because of his problems, everyone believed that he wouldn’t live long.
They all thought that he’d likely wind up in the gutter. Well, he turned his life around and helped so many people. He passed a month ago, and I miss him dearly.
29. Actions Have Consequences
My dad cheated on my mom right after we moved to the US for his job. He couldn’t bring himself to admit to my mom he was unfaithful, so he took the coward’s way out. He purposely left open an email conversation between him and the woman he was having an affair with for my oldest sister to find. She was I think 13 or so at the time and it messed her up bad.
She told my mom and after watching the destruction of her parents’ lives, she overdosed on pain meds and almost didn’t make it. My other sister and I, around 7 or so, woke up to my mom screaming at my sister and shaking her who wouldn’t wake up. It messed us all up pretty bad and to this day, my dad has never owned up to his faults to any of us kids.
30. Racing To The Truth
My mother’s uncle and cousin had a baby together, in a very rural part of where she’s from. My mother found out about it as a kid by accident, and spent her whole life trying to find the truth. And she only got the whole story recently by flying across the whole country and basically sneaking into the home where her mother’s sole remaining childhood friend lived.
She got the story out of her before any other family member could show up and stop her. Sadly, she learned that the baby had actually passed on in childhood.
31. When You Assume…
I found out I had an older half-sibling when I was in my 20s. Apparently, my father had a secret affair before I was born. The only way I learned is because this half-sibling sent me a long, very angry message on social media berating me. I was shocked to say the least. The message basically said how they had always hated me because I must’ve “lived such a privileged life, full of opportunities they never had, with a loving father who spoiled me”.
It explained how they had searched for me for years, to expose him. But they didn’t know the truth. That’s when I had to explain to them that our father had also left me when I was just a small child, and that he had never been a part of my life either. I explained that he was a heavy user and complete loser who had been physical with my mother.
I told them that I never wanted him to be a part of my life, especially as an adult. They were in absolute shock for holding onto false anger towards me, and hating me all those years. They explained how it had affected their entire personal life, and how they had been in years of therapy, through multiple divorces, etc. etc.—all over these false assumptions.
32. Coulda Been John Wick
When I was just a little baby, a tsunami hit my home country, which messed with the terrible third-world government data system, or so I was told. It deleted the “real” me from existence. It wasn’t until my mom decided to raise me in the US that I finally got a legal name and birthday, both of which were changed in the process of moving.
I was seven at the time and have since been living under this makeshift identity, but the fact that I was hidden from the government for that long amazes me. If you ask me, though, she missed her chance to raise an undercover and very personal hitman.
33. An Offer They Had To Refuse
In 1921, my great-grandfather’s father was going to be installed as the new Don for a mafia family in southern Italy. Mussolini was getting ready to grab power and felt like he was going to cause problems for the family. He didn’t want to do it. He told his father that he and his brother were going out for a gallon of milk.
They jumped on a boat, came to America, and changed their last name.
34. Taking On The Burden
It’s rumored that one of my aunts euthanized my grandmother, who was dying of lung cancer at the time, at 74 years of age. She passed after being discharged from a long hospital stay while being driven home. This aunt had been taking care of her for years, and my other aunts and uncles plus my mother, seven of them in total, quickly turned on her and accused her of offing my grandma so she could inherit the house.
I don’t have the specifics but basically, she flipped out and cursed them out, saying that they had some nerve saying stuff like that while they all moved away across the country and she was the only one taking care of their mother while also raising and supporting six children and constantly having to defend herself from an abusive alcoholic husband.
She also said something to the effect that my grandma had known it was time to go and she was all for ending it quickly or some such, which the family took as evidence. Now that they’re all old and two of the siblings have passed they’re all Kumbaya, but there’s still that big resentment there, and they’re still pretty terrible to each other.
35. The Forgotten Man
My grandfather had a child out of wedlock with my grandmother’s sister. His sister-in-law was married to a man who was away on duty while they had an affair. She gave birth to the child three months before her husband returned since he was gone for the whole year. She didn’t want the child and was going to turn him into an orphanage at birth so her husband wouldn’t find out.
My grandfather wanted nothing to do with that child either. My grandmother found out about the affair and as big-hearted as she was, took that child in and raised it as her own. But it didn’t quite turn out as she planned. He grew up with issues due to this. He had 13 siblings and some considered him a brother. Others treated him like an outsider.
He grew up troubled as you can imagine and knew of his reality even though my grandma tried to keep the secret. He grew up and became a junkie. A horrible addict. To this day you can see him in the family videos but my father and his siblings never point him out. Some relatives have cut him out of family pictures. They never speak about him.
I was only a child when this happened, around 7-9 years old. I remembered him but I thought I only dreamed him up until I was a teenager I saw him in one of my birthday videos. My sister and mother told me the truth. That he in fact was real and what happened. That’s how well my family has kept him a secret. I myself thought he was a dreamed man.
36. Now That’s A Rebound
After my grandmother on my mother’s side passed, my grandfather took off for a few months, leaving his children ranging from older teens to grade school age alone. When he returned, he was married to a woman who he and my grandmother were friends with from the Moose Lodge and had four more children to add to the mix.
37. Now That’s Bad Timing
One week before my younger sister’s wedding, my dad decided to call myself, both my sisters, and my mother (his ex-wife) to make a disturbing demand. He wanted us to meet at his house for something “very important he needed to tell us”. We all thought he had cancer or something. We were very worried. Once we were all there, he sobbingly confessed to having a five-year-old son living in the town next to ours.
This means the kid was conceived and born while my parents were still married. He claimed he didn’t know for sure that the kid was his, and he had only recently gotten a DNA test. He showed us a picture of our half-brother. He looks EXACTLY like my dad. My mother was devastated.
38. Black Sheep Or Bunny?
My great aunt was a Playboy bunny in the 1970s and apparently lived in the mansion and everything. I don’t know what her alias was, and only saw one photo of her in the bunny costume with other models the one time I met her as a kid. No one will talk to me about it and changes the subject the few times I’ve tried to bring it up.
39. A Real Giveaway
We always joked about my uncle being in the mafia because he looked like an Italian gangster. Well, that wasn’t true—but our suspicions ended up unraveling a wild secret. It turns out he had a totally different father than all of the other brothers and sisters…and, he was the middle child.
40. The Secrets Lurking In The “Other” Inbox
I have a secret sister that I’m not supposed to know about. Apparently, my mom get pregnant when she was really young, so my grandparents kicked her out of their house. She was living on her own and struggling to work to support her and her baby. She ended up giving the baby up for adoption. I guess my sister was shuffled around some foster homes and went through a lot of terrible things in her life, so she didn’t turn out very well.
I only know this because my other sister told me. I guess my secret sister tried to contact my mom and my other sister through Facebook to ask them for money—so that’s how my sister found out about her.
41. Tragedy On Tragedy
My cousin had a disorder that meant his brain maturation was equivalent to a four-year-old. He didn’t understand safety around babies. So he had attempted to pick up another family member’s baby who was six months old, but he dropped her. Seeing as he had snuck in to see the baby, he put her back and left. She had severe trauma and passed later that week.
Everyone who wasn’t there was told she rolled over and that’s how she fell/got injured. My uncle couldn’t bring himself to risk his son being locked up, be it in a facility or jail/prison, so we just sat on the secret.
42. Wait For The Punchline
My grandmother was born to a brother and sister and no one ever talks about it. She was adopted out and found out the truth later when her birth mother would come visit a lot. Dad found out later in life. It was the 1920s, they were 12 & 14 on a remote farm—genuine Flowers in the Attic-type stuff. This was typed with my two fingers and one toe.
43. Paging Dr. Phil
Apparently, my grandfather had an illegitimate, mixed-race kid outside of his marriage to my grandmother. From what I’ve been told and overheard over the years, my dad and aunts didn’t find out until they received a phone call from the kid, who was around 40 years old by that time, when my grandfather passed on in 2004. I’m also certain my grandma knew about his affair/child and him financially supporting her, but chose to not acknowledge it.
Sadly, my dad and aunts never got to confront him. I’m also fairly certain that hush money was given to my mystery aunt to not publicize the situation. It’s a shame that I don’t know her name because I would like to meet her. Hopefully, she’s not like my other three aunts, who are all bougie snobs who have turned my dad into the black sheep of the family for his drinking, even though they’ve been involved in some way more scandalous situations.
And the story doesn’t end there. I know that my dad is shady in the faithful department. I guess the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree! Several years ago, me, my husband, and my brother decided to ride over to my dad’s house to visit him while my stepmom was away for the weekend. We were gonna surprise him so we didn’t call beforehand.
At the time, he lived in the country and was the only house on his road. When we parked in the driveway and got out, we were greeted by a bizarre sight. There were several articles of clothing strewn on the ground, leading to the door. I knocked on the door several times but my dad never answered and his door was locked. He never locked his door, so that was highly suspect.
So we stood around outside for a few minutes to see if he would come to the door and that’s when I noticed a woman’s purse on one of the outside chairs. I did what any nosy daughter would’ve done—I went through it to see whose it was. I saw the driver’s license of a woman who definitely wasn’t my stepmom. There was also a little prepaid cricket phone in her purse.
So we decided to leave, and as we are driving away, my brother looks at us and did one of the funniest things I’ve ever seen him do in my life. He said “Hey, y’all know that crickets don’t fly” and threw that woman’s phone out the window at 55 mph.
44. Ignorance Is Bliss
My siblings and I are aware that we have a younger half-sister after our father confessed about her a few years after our parents’ divorce. She lives in a poorer country and we’ve even visited her. My dad says the reason he told us is because he wants us to “look out for her”. I remember the funny feeling of betrayal. I was already in my 20s, and more teed off about not being the only daughter as I believed I’d been my whole life.
Also, my dad gave her my middle name. We’re around seven years apart and I couldn’t care less about her. The funny thing was, when we visited her, my dad actually brought his third wife along. He had also divorced the girl’s mother at this point. I wonder what the woman was thinking? And on top of that…my mom doesn’t know anything about the girl.
She saw family photos of us when we visited our half-sister, with the teen girl tugging my dad’s hand. We siblings had to lie that it was his friend’s kid.
45. That Family Tree Is Twisted
My paternal grandmother had all her four children with different fathers. She was pregnant with my dad when she met the person who my dad thought was his father. She had one child with him, and then got pregnant twice with two other men while married to him. The first wasn’t so obvious, but the second was. They divorced, of course.
I did the AncestryDNA test to figure out what I am, and then this started to come to light with the connections. We thought that the person who my dad thought was his father had three children with my grandmother, but only had one. It sucks that my grandmother didn’t tell the truth before she passed. Also, I carry a last name from someone who is not biologically related to me, who I thought was.
I am just glad my parents who raised me are my biological parents. My dad is completely in denial about this truth. He doesn’t know who his father is, and it is hard to find out since a lot of people in the older generation are no longer alive.
46. Despicable To The End
My grandad had seven kids with three different mistresses while he was married to my nan. My cousin is actually my mom’s half-brother. But that’s not the worst part. About six months ago, my grandad told my family that my nan fainted in the kitchen, but he didn’t know. He watched TV for around 20 minutes before she woke up.
When she woke up she begged him to take her to the hospital, but he didn’t want to waste fuel so he called his friend who took around 20 minutes to get to their home so they could drive to the hospital. My nan passed on the way to the hospital. We don’t know which friend drove them to the hospital nor which hospital they drove to and her cause of death is still unknown.
This happened around six months ago and it still hurts. He lied about how my nan passed before her funeral and told his kids including my mother to get over it. He took part of the money for her funeral and spent it on his mistress. No one talks to him, he is an absolute piece of trash. He was so flippant at the funeral. His wife of 40 years was gone and he doesn’t care.
My nan refused to leave him as she loved him, even though he cheated. He is despicable.
47. A Secret With A Happy Ending
My uncle served in Vietnam. While over there, his troop found a baby that had been orphaned or abandoned, they aren’t sure. My uncle was shipping back to Australia soon and wanted to adopt him, but my aunt said no. They’d only been married about four months when he was drafted, so while I don’t agree with my aunt’s actions and generally don’t like her as a person, I can understand why she said no.
My uncle’s troop found a family to raise the baby, and that’s the story the whole family knows—but there’s way more to it than that. The secret is that my uncle and some other guys from his troop stayed in contact with the family and the kid, sending them money every month to help raise him and then to help him go to university.
They eventually helped him and his adoptive family move to Australia in the late 90s. My aunt and the rest of my family had no idea all this time, it only came out when my aunt and uncle divorced in 2017 and she had a forensic accountant go through their bank records. She worked at a bank for like 40 years and always noticed the money missing, but his reasons were always justified.
Since we all know now, my uncle has introduced some of us to the guy and his family. They’re all really lovely people.
48. It’s Not Only Money
A few years before my Dad passed on, he had a chat with me about what my Mum had done. It turns out that she forged my Dads signature to re-mortgage their house and used the money to spend on whatever she wanted, when my dad confronted her with the evidence all she said was “It’s only money.” To add to this, she ran up multiple credit cards to five-figure sums.
On those, my dad bailed her out at least three times. Eventually, my dad had to re-mortgage a small portion of their house to bail her out again. This was when they were retired. I found out the actual sum that he bailed her out of when I was clearing out the house after she passed on. I found a small piece of paper with the sums written down by my dad. It came to nearly £50,000.
My dad said he never left her because of me and my brother, she never owned up to it and never apologized, not even sure if my brother knows the full scale of what she did. I will never forgive my mum for what she did and I am glad she is gone. I miss my dad terribly. After he told me this, everything that went on between my mom and dad during my younger years all fell into place.
For all the money my mom spent, she had little to show for it. I have no idea what she spent it on.
49. Picking Sides
When I was in fourth grade I read some text messages between my mom and the man she owned a business with. At the time I had no idea what they meant, but they were along the lines of “I love you so much, can’t wait to see you again”. Recently, my parents got divorced and my sister and me discovered that my mom had an affair for 15 years.
This man went to my birth and pretty much every big event that has happened in my life. I realized she was having an affair around a year before my parents’ divorce, from walking in on them kissing. My mom is a very controlling person and has brainwashed my sisters into thinking my dad is a horrible person. Me and my sisters currently do not live together—I’m with my dad and my sisters are with my mom.
When I threatened to expose my mom to her friends and family, she threatened to kick me out and make sure I never live in a house again. After I told my friends about what she did she threw a 25-pound dumbbell at me. Now I am bigger and stronger than her, so she will not mess with me. After a very awful childhood, I was put into a lot of therapy—but there’s still a problem.
None of my therapists have ever been on my side, and they break HIPAA laws by telling my mom everything we talk about.
50. Not A Secret Anymore
One day, my dad told my mom he was flying to our holiday home on the other side of the state to do some maintenance on the house and he would be gone for about a week. The truth was so much more devastating. What he was really doing was going to the hospital to get a brain tumor removed. He’d hidden his cancer for months and didn’t tell anyone—not even his wife of 45 years.
After a week, he was discharged. He went home and told my mom the whole story. When we asked why he didn’t tell anyone, his response was heartbreaking. He said that he didn’t want to scare or stress anyone out. I think my mom almost put him straight back in that hospital. Thank God it all went well, and he is still cancer-free.