People are not always who they appear to be on the surface. Some might seem completely average and ordinary, while secretly harboring deep, dark secrets that no one would ever suspect of them. And in some cases, their secrets can be so deep and so dark that they will almost certainly go their entire lives without ever telling a soul—with the exception of some anonymous strangers on the internet, that is. Discover the secrets these Redditors intend to take to their graves.
1. Where There’s Smoke, There’s Fire
My secret is that my father burned down our childhood home for the insurance money. He took me along as his alibi, so that I could “verify” that he wasn’t anywhere near the location when it happened. I was only 13 years old at the time. I remember crying so hard knowing that all of my clothes, books, photos, and everything I owned would be destroyed. I wasn’t allowed to save anything because he told me it would have looked too suspicious.
I found out years later that he blamed the whole thing on me. He told the fire chief (plus all of our friends and family) that the fire had started because I had been secretly smoking in my bedroom. I’ve never smoked in my life!
2. Anything You Can Do, I Can Do Equally
My secret is that my mother is cheating on my father and my father is cheating on my mother. Neither of them knows about what the other is doing. They both know that I know about their own behaviors, as they each separately made me promise not to tell the other parent. Parents can be messed up sometimes…
3. In for a Penny, In for a Pound
My secret is that my dad bribed my mom with a small sum of $1,500 for full custody of my youngest sibling when we were kids. Not only would this be a massive blow to my sibling’s self-esteem if she ever found out, but my dad remarried quite quickly and his new wife is the very definition of an evil step-mom. I don’t think that my sibling could live with the knowledge that her real mom gave her up for next to nothing and the trade-off was more than five years of torment. Her ego would be destroyed.
4. All Pooped Out
My deepest, darkest secret is that when I was a kid, I used to regularly poop in a tire in our garden because I was scared of getting locked in the bathroom if I used the toilet.
5. How Much Is That Doggie on the Sofa?
I am the only person alive who knows that my mother-in-law sat on her pet dog until it suffocated; and I intend to keep it that way.
6. Age Is Just a Number
My secret is that I lost my virginity at age 27 with a woman who was 58 years old. She is a sweet lady who knew my mother and felt badly for me. It was purely done out of pity, but I didn’t care. I continued my relationship with her for another 2 months until she ended it because she was worried that I had grown “dependent” on her.
I’m 29 now and she’s still the only woman I’ve ever been with. On the bright side, it will be easy to take this secret to the grave since I know I’m gonna die alone.
7. Not What You Signed Up For…
I once pooped in my pants on a New Year’s party bus a few years ago. I thought it was just going to be a toot, but it turned out to be a small blast of fluid. I stayed calm, said nothing to any of the people around me, and threw my undies in the garbage can at the next bar we stopped at. Luckily, there was little to no poop residue on the inside of my jeans and I was able to continue the night without anyone finding out about my little secret. And no one ever will.
8. He Just Needed to Vent
When I was about 6 years old, I was super scared of the dark like most 6-year-olds are. It was late at night one evening and I needed to pee really badly. I had an air vent on the floor near my bed. So, obviously, my 6-year-old mind thought that it would be a good idea to pee into the vent. My parents never found out about it, but for a good while they were constantly complaining about the pee smell in our house that they could never seem to locate.
I’m taking this secret to my grave.
9. Reading Between the Lines
My little secret is that I did my 6th, 7th, and 8th-grade book reports on “A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court,” even though we were not allowed to use the same book more than once. I managed to get away with it without anyone noticing. I got an A on the assignment each year. I’ve also never read the book.
10. I’m Not Who You Think I Am
As a teenager, I had cancer multiple times and almost lost my life on several occasions. At one point, I spent several weeks in intensive care and survived despite no doctor thinking that I could possibly live. More than 20 years later, everyone I know still comments on how I survived purely thanks to my intense will to live. In reality, my secret is that I was nothing like that courageous, determined hero that they all make me out to be today.
I actually spent every waking moment in that hospital bed in absolute agony, desperately wanting to die as quickly as possible.
11. Inside Out
I once planned to end my own life and had it all planned out. My letter was already written and ready to go. Then, on the morning of the day that I had planned on doing it, the person who had tormented me at school for years and made my life miserable shocked everyone by taking his own life. That was when the reality of what I had been planning really sunk in and I realized that I had almost made a terrible mistake. I swore to myself right then and there that I would get help.
Even though nowadays I can paint a really happy picture on the outside, I can still sometimes feel myself having days where I want to bawl my eyes out, crawl into a corner, and just disappear. My life is exponentially better now than it was before, but that still doesn’t change how messed up I sometimes feel on the inside.
My darkest secret is the fact that I still fight these urges, and that I still hate myself.
12. A Very Big Secret
My secret is that I despise overweight people. I mean really obese people. When I’m out in public and I see obese people, I secretly insult them in my head. I don’t even know why. It’s not like I don’t understand how hard it can be to lose weight. I guess I just feel like I don’t really care.
13. It All Came Crashing Down
My first car accident back in high school was not the result of me swerving to avoid hitting a deer, like I told my dad and the authorities. What actually happened was that I tried to pull the emergency brake and do a 180 while going 50 miles per hour down a steep hill, just to see if I could pull it off. Had I crashed on the other side of the road instead of where I did, I would have fallen down a 50-foot hill and into the river. That was the last time I ever tried anything like that.
Lucky for me, there just so happened to have been visible deer tracks in the mud near the ditch that I ended up in. I avoided getting a ticket and my dad paid to have my car fixed. I have never told him the truth in the more than 15 years that have passed since the incident.
14. Much a Dew About Nothing
My secret is that when I was 11 years old, my friend and I broke into our local swim club in the middle of the night. I picked the lock on the Snack Bar door and we both snuck in. When all was said and done, we took at least two gallons of Mountain Dew.
15. Starting Out on the Wrong Foot
My secret is that the only reason I agreed to go on a first date with the person who is now my fiance was to make him stop crying. Six years later, we’re happily engaged and doing great. I don’t know how well he remembers those early days of our relationship, but I’m sure as heck not planning on bringing it up any time soon!
16. Sock It to Me
Once, when I was 13 years old, I went a full week and a half without pooping. I was on a camping trip and something must have happened with the drinking water or my digestive system. I tried taking laxatives, but nothing worked. My stomach hurt so bad, but nothing would come out. Then, one evening after dinner, I suddenly felt it coming. At long last, I knew that this was it. I bolted for the bathhouse, mentally preparing for the epic event. When I finally waddled in, THE STALLS WERE ALL OCCUPIED.
At this point, I was freaking out. I was literally about to either poop in my pants or in the woods with no means of cleaning myself after. Desperate, I waddled over to the private shower area attached to the bathrooms and my mind suddenly went into problem-solving mode. I felt like I was Bradley Cooper in the movie Limitless.
Initially, I thought I could just poop on the shower drain and waffle stomp it through, but I was not going to be that guy who ruined the nicest shower in the woods for everyone. Then, like a bolt of lightning, I knew what I had to do. I pooped in the only piece of clothing I could spare: my sock. Obviously, my stomach was doing much better now and I was hugely relieved. I carried the poop sock over to the nearby dumpster to discard, but one of my friends saw me on the way.
Before I could dispose of the poop sock, this friend strikes up a conversation with me and starts asking questions about what I was doing. At this point, I started to really panic internally. The best excuse I could come up with on the spot was that I had just found a sock in the shower that was stuffed with mud, so I thought it best to throw it away. My friend affirmed how good of a guy I was for doing that, and then walked away without suspecting a thing.
As soon as he left, I threw the poop sock into the dumpster and let out a massive sigh of relief. My problems were finally over. In hindsight, mud in a sock is a ridiculous story, but there’s absolutely no way he could have ever guessed that the real situation was much, much more bizarre. I’ve never told a single soul about this little episode, until now. And I never plan to again.
17. Happy Holidays
My secret is that during my mom’s boss’ Christmas party one year, my girlfriend at the time and I passionately made love in front of the venue behind a pine tree.
18. Take Me Out to the Ball Game
I learned that my grandfather apparently had a hand in designing one of the original World Series trophies back in the day. He never got any credit for it, but we have photos and parts of his prototype version; so we know it’s true. When I was a teen, I added what I had heard about his role to a Wikipedia page, since why not? I believe my contribution has since been taken down but, funny story, I actually ended but being quoted in newspapers all over the country because of it!
A few years later, I proceeded to get a call from my mom one day, who was almost in tears (of joy) on the phone. She found that Wikipedia page and was FREAKING OUT over the fact that it mentioned my grandfather. She was so happy that he had finally gotten the credit he deserved in the eyes of the public. She ended up making really fancy shadow boxes of the printed out Wiki page, including copies of the original photos and other baseball stuff. She made one for each of her siblings as well.
I’ve had to just bite my tongue every time I go over there and see this thing hanging prominently in the living room, knowing that it’s all in reaction to something that I innocently did.
19. Acting Like It Never Happened
My secret is that me and my cousin took turns licking each other when we were about 10 years old. I have a vivid memory of it. We have never spoken of it since. We’re both 25-year-old men with normal lives now.
20. Worked Out
When I was a teenager, my parents were divorced yet lived within walking distance of each other. I would often walk back and forth between their homes for whatever reason. I got to know a family that lived in the house on the corner of the block that my mother lived on. One day, as I was passing this family’s house, I noticed a wallet on the ground. I picked it up and opened it. I noticed that the address on the ID was the house on the corner, and that it belonged to the mom of the family who was a very nice lady.
Me being a teenager, I took all of the money out of the wallet, which was a total of about $50. I then went back to the home and returned the wallet, explaining that I had found it down the street. The mother was very relieved and grateful to have it back. What always weighed on me is that, a few weeks later, I passed the corner house as I often did and the lady stopped me. She wanted to thank me for returning the wallet and handed me a $50 bill as a token of her appreciation. I tried to refuse it, but she insisted.
I was rewarded for stealing. While it’s not a big secret per se, it is something that I always think of and feel guilty about for some reason. I have never really had the heart to tell anyone about it.
21. Saved by the Smell
My secret is that I know my dad cheated on my mom. I know this because, when I was just 9 years old, he invited the person he was cheating with over to our house while I was home, thinking I wouldn’t know or understand what was going on. She was a severely overweight woman, and my dad is also quite overweight himself. At the time, my parents had been frequently fighting, but they were trying to work things out. It was bad enough by this point, though, that they had already started sleeping in separate rooms.
Earlier that day, I had jumped on my dad’s bed and broken the board supporting it on the frame. I wasn’t allowed to jump on the bed, and often got in trouble for doing so. When my mom came into the room to discipline me, she could smell the fact that my dad had just had company, because the woman had clearly smoked while she was in the room.
She asked if I had jumped on the bed. I said no, fearing that I would get in trouble if I confessed the truth. I was surprised to see that there was no follow up trying to prove my guilt. Years later, I suddenly remembered the whole incident—and that’s when I realized the painful truth. My seemingly harmless lie basically incriminated my dad in her eyes. Now, I’m sure he was actually guilty of what my mom suspected; but nevertheless, it was my lie that got him kicked out of the house for good.
I will never let anyone know that I was the one who really broke the bed; or that I broke up my parents’ marriage in the process, either.
22. The Old Switcharoo
In the 8th grade, I completely sucked at arts and crafts. For our term assignment, we were given the parts to build this toy car thing. My car did not work at all. We had to race it and the teacher would grade each car. I knew my engine didn’t work, so I just replaced the shell of the sample model car that my teacher had with mine, and raced the teacher’s car as if it was my own. I swapped it back right after before anyone could notice.
In the end, the final examinations screwed me over, but I still managed to pass the class thanks to this incident bumping up my overall grade.
23. Passing the Real Test
I am a teacher. I once had a sweet, wonderful student who had been in foster care for years, but his mom worked her butt off to get him back and eventually did. He had to take a very important state exam and she called me afterward to ask if he had passed it. I looked at the grades and saw that he did, so I told her so. She immediately burst into tears of joy; and that was precisely when I realized that I had been looking at the wrong score.
He had actually failed—but I knew what I had to do. I changed his grade to a pass. No one knew. That was the only time in my entire career that I ever did something like that. It could have cost me my license. The weird thing is that, on a separate occasion, when my awful and corrupt principal tried to pressure me to change other students’ scores so that we could raise our pass rate, I refused.
I never told anyone about what I did for that student. He eventually went into the Armed Forces, was extremely successful there, and had a great wife and kids. So at the end of the day, I guess that I did the right thing. Screw those standardized tests. They aren’t human.
24. Something Wasn’t Right
Many years ago, when I was still just an awkward tween, my brothers and I used to spend a lot of time at our grandparents’ house. We had been raised by our grandparents since we were all little kids; and even after my dad remarried, he and my stepmom both worked graveyard shifts. So, we would very often spend the night at my grandparents’ house while my parents were at work.
One day, my grandmother informed me that it was my grandfather’s birthday, and suggested that I wish him a happy birthday. He was downstairs in the living room sitting on the sofa, and I went up to him and gave him a big hug around the neck and said, “Happy Birthday, Grandpa.” It was kind of difficult to hug a person sitting down, so I ended up kneeling on the sofa between his legs rather than trying to hug him from a standing position.
He was quite happy and gave me a hug back. When I pulled back from the hug, he held me in his arms and gave me a big smile. And then he put his tongue in my mouth. Sometimes, when I was a little kid, we would kiss other family members on the mouth, but those were nothing but chaste pecks on the lips. I could tell immediately that this was different.
His tongue was on my teeth. It lasted only for a moment, and I was grossed out and confused when I pulled away. At that moment, my grandmother walked into the living room. I turned my head around to look at her. My hands were still on my grandpa’s shoulders. She seemed really happy that I had wished my grandfather a happy birthday like a good little kid. I gave him a final quick hug and then scrammed out of the room.
For the rest of my tween and teen years, I was always careful not to be alone in the same room with my grandfather ever again. He passed during my twenties, a good decade ahead of his time due to lifestyle-induced health issues. As I expected, my family chose me to speak at his funeral. I had really complicated feelings about it because I did love him.
My grandma and grandpa raised me, after all. Also, my grandfather was the rock of the family and, after he passed, the three branches of it (my dad and our family, plus his siblings and their families) gradually drifted apart from each other. Nothing would ever be the same between us again. We don’t even spend Christmas all together anymore.
I’ve never told anyone in my family about it because I just couldn’t bear to break my grandmother’s heart. She’s survived her husband for 10 years at this point, and still talks to and about him every day and visits his grave multiple times a week. So, thanks for listening to my very personal story, internet people! It’s nice to finally get that off my chest.
25. The Night Before
My secret is that my cousin slept with an adult dancer during his bachelor party on the night before his wedding. Hours earlier, we randomly ran into his fiance and her friends, and she made a huge deal about not wanting him to go to a gentleman’s club specifically because she was afraid of something like this happening.
As it turned out, she was absolutely right to be worried about that. He never told her. Only 3 people know this. Me, him, and the dancer.
26. Eye Spy
When I was a kid, another kid in my neighborhood once shot me with an airsoft on purpose, even though I wasn’t playing with him at the time. So, a little bit later, I wrapped an airsoft pellet in tinfoil and shot the kid in the eye. I hid somewhere where he wouldn’t see me when I did it, so he had no idea who was responsible. He never seemed to figure it out, and nobody else did either.
His eye is permanently damaged, and I believe it’s completely blinded to this day.
27. Reaching the Breaking Point
My secret is that I attempted to end my mother’s life. She was abusive to me, verbally and also physically. She’d hit me in places no one would see, or rip clumps of my hair out when dad was on the road for work. She probably has a personality disorder. She got in my face one night when I was coming home from my second job, and I had it.
My mom went through whole periods where she just wouldn’t work, while I was going insane every summer working over 50 hours a week to pay family bills in my parents’ names and also getting my younger sister to all of her activities. I HAD IT. I tried to put my mom’s head through a wall. She started screaming, “Oh, help! Help!” and I told her that if she could dish it out, she should also be able to take it.
I shoved her onto the ground and kicked her repeatedly in the abdomen and thigh, while still trying to put her head through the wall with one hand (it’s a plaster and lath situation, old-style house in New England). I really messed her up, and it felt good to do so. She has destroyed so many people’s lives and she never faces any consequences for it.
No one in our family ever helped me or called the authorities when she would torment me. The only one who ever helped was the dog. If the dog was awake when my mom tried to start something, she would get between us and growl at her until she backed down. I had always shown restraint and never hit her until this night. Nevertheless, my dad did call 9-1-1 on me when I crossed that line.
The officers got there and split us up for interviews. I explained my side of the story and then just blurted out, “Where were you jerks when I was 8 years old and she was doing that to me??” The officer was taken aback. I think he could tell that I was being honest and that it was a culmination of years of trouble and pain. He went back and spoke to his partner, before saying “I think this isn’t an assault, I think it’s a mental illness thing.”
Then, they basically intimidated my mom and dad into agreeing with them. They wouldn’t let it go until they had both agreed that it was a medical issue. So, they called an ambulance and I went to the hospital as part of a “diversion program.” Basically, they sent me to detox for three days and I emerged with no record, no charges, and no anything else either except a script for Prozac and a recommendation for therapy (paid for by the state low-income insurance plan).
Trying to kill my mom probably saved my life, honestly. I got myself some useful tools from a professional therapist, and it helped me become a more balanced person in the long run. That being said, I’m not stupid enough to want people to know about it. Who would ever date me? How would I ever get promoted at work?
Anyway, the moral of the story is to be kind to people. You never know what someone has been through, and you never know what people are capable of when pushed far enough.
28. Say What Now?
My deep, dark secret is that I once took a life in self-defense. It was a homeless person; he tried to attack me. That took some therapy to get over, I’ll tell you that.
29. Too Close for Comfort
My secret is that I once beat someone up so badly that he almost didn’t make it…and I kind of enjoyed it.
30. They Messed with the Wrong Guy
My secret is that I have ended the lives of two men. They tried to rob me with a knife, but I always carried a pocketknife and I struck first. After I got the first guy in the gut, the other guy pushed me against the wall and tried to hit me, but I managed to get him in under the rib cage before he could do anything. It was all over the local newspaper and I still have nightmares about it.
31. This Town Ain’t Big Enough for the Two of Us
My secret is that I’m in love with a taken man. I’ve never loved any other man but him in my life, and I know that I won’t ever fall in love with anybody else again.
32. Oh, You Beautiful Doll
I will never let anyone know that I used to have one of those expensive and fancy life-sized “girlfriend” dolls that you see in movies and cartoons. I got rid of it at the first possible opportunity as soon as I got a real partner. Nevertheless, it remains the one thing in my life that I am not willing to ever tell anyone I know about.
33. How Am I Doing?
My biggest secret is that I’m terrified by how much other people’s approval motivates everything that I do in my life. I try to play it cool, but I care about popularity more than your average high school student probably does. I’m 30 years old. I’m also absolutely obsessed with the idea that I’m homely, and I fantasize about being beautiful.
When I was a kid, I once ate a grape at the grocery store. My mom never bought them because they were too expensive. I just wanted to know what they tasted like.
35. The City of Motherly Love
You know those stories about girls in the ‘70s who “went to live with an aunt” for a year during high school? I did that. In 2008. I was a very naive teenager who was still just getting used to the way her body worked, and my friend thought it would be absolutely hilarious to buy a few of those cheap pregnancy tests from Walmart and see what happened.
We laughed the whole time, until one of them came out positive. We couldn’t remember which one was which, so we got 2 more and it turned out it was mine. That was when it dawned on me: I had recently slept with someone. My school did not offer any kind of sex education and my parents were useless in that regard, so it was completely possible that I had not used my protection properly. I panicked and swore my friend to secrecy.
I basically put it out of my mind until my clothes didn’t fit anymore. I was always close with my older cousin and we were talking on the phone one night when she asked how school was going. I just broke down and dumped all of it on her. She calmed me down and then came up with the perfect plan. It was already April and, when I’d finally gotten up the courage to go to a Planned Parenthood, they’d told me that I was due in August. So, my cousin called my mom saying that there was this amazing summer music program in her town that I just HAD to attend, and that I could stay with her the whole time.
My mom thought it was great and the day after school ended, I got on a plane to San Francisco. I stayed with my cousin, she went to all of my appointments with me, and she helped me find a social worker and eventually my daughter’s future adoptive parents. When I arrived back home before my junior year of high school started, my mom asked me how my summer was without really caring and then remarked that I must have lost a few pounds.
My cousin lost their life in 2012 in a car accident, and no one else knew about this whole thing apart from that one friend, the doctors I saw in Oakland, and the people involved in the adoption. I get a photo and a letter about the child once a year, and I send money for her college and a card for her birthday every year. When she turns 16, her parents are allowed to give her the cards if she wants them, but they are not permitted to pass any contact information along.
I have no interest in meeting her or getting to know her personally. I know she’s safe and comfortable, and that’s all I want. I will die before I tell anyone about her, and if my friend were to ever spill the beans I would simply deny it.
36. Confuse Thy Father and Thy Mother
Every year, I secretly write my parents a Christmas card signed by “Sarah and Michael” just to mess with them. Obviously, they have no idea who those people are, and so they spend a large chunk of every Christmas Day trying to figure it out.
37. A Family Matter
My secret is that my mom is in a relationship with her somewhat distant cousin. Yes, we call him Tio (Spanish for uncle). Yes, he lives with us. And yes, I find it disgusting. I have done everything I can to hide it from people I know. It is extremely embarrassing. Fortunately, my mom and dad are not related.
38. Hiding Your True Feelings
My big secret is the extent to which I hate myself and my life. I think about death a lot, but never tell anyone because there is a very real possibility of me losing my job if I do. It’s a pretty bad situation to be stuck in. I desperately need help, but can’t actually seek it or be open about my issues because I would be risking some very serious repercussions.
39. With Friends Like Those, Who Needs Enemies
My secret is that I was physically attacked in the youth room of my childhood church by my two best friends at the time. We were basically alone in the building when it happened. One did it, and the other held me down. They thought it was a funny joke, even once I started screaming. One of them eventually had a moment of clarity and I suppose realized that what they were doing was wrong. At that point, they made the other person stop, and then they both sat there with me for a few minutes until I had calmed down.
Once I regained my composure enough to stand up, I racked one of them between the legs with a pool cue. Their parents were waiting for us in the parking lot, and they were going to call the authorities on me when they discovered what I had done. Finally, my friends confessed what they had done to their parents. I was then pressured into silence by the pastor at the parents’ behest.
I’ve told some people about this over the years, so I guess it’s not technically a secret. Nevertheless, people have generally not believed me when I’ve spoken about it, because I’m a big guy and always have been. The last person I tried to talk to about it actually smacked me in the face for even suggesting that such a thing could have happened, so I guess one way or another I’ll be dying with this one as my lifelong secret.
40. A Different Part of the World
The secret that I will take to my grave is the fact that I am bisexual. I live in Russia where it is not really possible to admit something like that without facing serious consequences. I’m not prepared to go down that road.
41. Five More Minutes
When I was 15 years old, I was lying in bed one morning when I heard my dad coming up the stairs. Being a typical teenager, a conversation with my dad first thing in the morning was not something that I could be bothered with, so I pretended to be asleep. I heard my dad come into my room and stand at the end of my bed in silence. I waited, expecting him to say something, but he just stayed right where he was and didn’t say or do anything.
This went on for an oddly long amount of time. After about 5 or 6 minutes, he left the room and I just thought to myself, “Good thing he finally left! What was he doing staring at me? That weirdo!” My dad then walked downstairs, continued out the front door of our house, and drove off. They found his body 3 days later. It turned out that those 5 or 6 minutes in my bedroom was him taking a last look at his son before he took his own life.
Ever since then, my darkest (and guiltiest) secret has been the fact that I spent my last ever time in the presence of my dad thinking that he was a weirdo.
42. The Worst Day of All Time
This is something that I should probably have told my best friend about a long time ago, but I just don’t have the heart to break it to him. Only an hour before his girlfriend lost her life in a car accident, I saw her at my job making out with the captain of the track team (my best friend’s cousin). It’s now been eight years since the accident, but I still can’t tell him about it. It would destroy him emotionally, and I can’t do that to him.
He was planning to propose to her that day, too…