From deathbed confessions to scandalous letters, these Redditors stumbled across the cold hard truth—and didn't like what they found. After reading their stories, one thing's for certain: Some secrets are better left buried.
1. Message In A Bottle
I once got a Facebook message from a guy asking if I was related to my dad, since we don't have a common last name. I thought he was a fan of his work because I was in college at the time and the guy was about the same age as me.
And that's how I found out that my dad had slept around and that I had a half-brother the same age as me...
2. Wrongly Rewarded
Seems like a good time as any to tell this story. When I was a teenager, my parents were divorced yet lived within walking distance of each other. I would often times 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 my mother lived on.
One day, as I was passing this house, I noticed a wallet on the ground. I picked up and opened the wallet. I noticed the address on the ID was the house on the corner and it belonged to the mom of the family, a very nice lady. I'm still ashamed of what I did. Being a teenager, I took all of the money out of the wallet (about $50). I then went back to the home and returned the wallet explaining I found it down the street.
The mother was very relieved and grateful. What always weighed on me is what happened 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. I tried to refuse it, but she insisted. I was rewarded for stealing. I’ve never really had the heart to tell anyone this story.
3. Two-Timing Trickster
I had an uncle who was a railroad engineer and worked the Terre Haute, Indiana, to Danville, Illinois line. He never took a day off from his one day there, one day back route. At his funeral, a strange woman came into the funeral home with some older children. No one knew who she was.
Finally, my grandma introduced herself to the woman and asked who she was. The woman said, “I’m Mrs. So and So. I’m here for my husband’s funeral”. It turned out that my uncle had two families, one in Terre Haute and one in Danville. I didn’t find out about this until I was an adult.
My mom, grandma, aunt, and sister kept it a secret for decades.
4. Took The Pain Too Far
When I was around 10 years old, I decided I wanted the day off school. So, I said to my mom I was having really bad stomach cramps. Because I’d done this a few times before, she didn’t quite believe me, so I exaggerated the pain a lot to make it believable. By the evening, I still didn’t want her to think I had made it up and miraculously got better, so I said the pain was getting worse and worse.
By that point, she phoned my dad explaining that I was in so much pain. He advised phoning an ambulance, as it could be appendicitis. I was in too deep, but it was too late to stop now. I couldn’t go back, as she had already called the ambulance and I knew how much trouble I would get into with my mum and dad.
I was taken to the hospital where they checked me over, but I just kept on feigning the pain. They did observations over the night and into next day and weren’t sure what it could be, They sent me for scans and so on, on my appendix, as that’s what kept being suggested. The scans came back as normal, but whenever I was being checked by the doctor, I would scream in pain.
They then came to the decision that even though my appendix wasn’t inflamed on the scan, they didn’t want to risk it and decided they would operate. I ended up having my appendix out for no reason. I have never admitted to either parent even though it’s going on nearly 20 years now. I’m a bit concerned that the NHS was so quick to operate on something that didn’t even look like a problem.
I also wonder what the surgeon thought when he took it out. As far as I’m aware, nothing was said about my non-inflamed appendix.
5. Passed A Failing Student
I had a sweet, wonderful student who had been in foster care, but his mom worked hard to get him back and she did. He had to take a very important state exam and she called me and asked if he passed it. I looked at the grades and saw he did and said so. She burst into tears of joy, but I had made a terrible mistake. Just as the words left my lips, I saw I had read the wrong score.
He had failed. I should have just told her the truth, but I couldn't bear it. So, I changed his grade to passing. No one knew. That was the only time I ever did that. It could have cost me my license, but it was worth it. The weird thing is, when my awful corrupt principal pressured me to change other students' scores so we could raise our pass rate, I refused. I never told anyone what I did for my student.
He went into the Armed Forces, was extremely successful there, and today he has a great wife and kids. So, I think I did the right thing. Forget those tests. They aren't human.
6. No Luck For These Irish Lads
Part of my mom's side is very, very convinced they're Irish in all the American "kiss me, I'm Irish" ways. My grandparents took a trip there and spent a lot of time at a local pub, getting to know Irish singers and poets; my cousins have very Irish names, etc.
I took a few ancestry tests to nail down the rest of my mom's side, and realized there was something weird going on. There was not a single percent Irish in any of them.
The family name, which is common among Irish-Americans, is actually a Swiss surname that got translated at some point, according to the genealogy trace I also had done. My now-deceased grandparents wanted their ashes spread in the Irish Sea, and my mom and her siblings are planning a big trip to do it.
I'm taking the secret to my grave.
6. Finally Finding Family
Last fall, we discovered that my paternal grandmother had had an illegitimate child with a young officer who had just returned to the United States at the end of WWII. When she passed, we found a hidden stash of love letters that had been sent between them. At the time, we had asked her best friend, my godmother, about it.
She denied any knowledge of a former partner of that description, but thanks to family members who became enthralled with the concept, we discovered my dad and his brothers had a half-brother living only two hours away. Last fall, he welcomed us into his home to finally meet his estranged family. It was definitely a moment to remember.
We discovered he had been very close to the family physician who was considered an "uncle" despite no actual familial relation. It was a very emotional afternoon as my dad and his brothers shared stories with the brother they never knew they had, even discovering that my eldest uncle, the oldest of my grandmother’s legitimate children, was named after the family that adopted the secret son.
7. He Liked To Watch
My mom recently told me that she was three months pregnant at their wedding. They were married for 45 years but might not have married at all had my mom not been knocked up. My mom almost left my dad 13 years into the marriage until she got pregnant with my brother and changed her mind. But that wasn't even the craziest revelation.
I later found out that my mom had a lesbian affair with our babysitter...and my dad used to watch.
8. Serious PTSD
My dad always had weird behavior around toy pieces and stuff like that. He seemed to be afraid of them. It was only when I was 18 years old that my mom decided to tell me the reason. My dad was 15 years old and he was hanging out with a bunch of friends at one of their houses. Everyone was having a good time until the worst thing imaginable happened.
The kid whose house they were at suddenly went upstairs, grabbed his father's pistol, and came back down calling everyone's attention. He then put the pistol to his head, squeezed the trigger, and collapsed behind a couch. They all thought it was some sort of sick joke at first until they looked over the couch and saw his body and the blood.
I'm amazed how my dad turned out to be such a great man having to experience something awful like that at such a young age, but according to him, it's something that never left him either. He still has nightmares about it and gets really uneasy in movies and TV shows when they show someone getting shot in the head.
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9. Once Upon A Time
When my grandma went into a nursing home, I helped my dad clean out her house. She had a lot, so we found some neat stuff. Tucked away at the bottom of a drawer was a fancy little box, much nicer than most things she owned. There were a few things in it including a folded newspaper clipping of a woman and a little boy.
They looked just like her and my dad. My grandma had a bit of a mysterious past, so we assumed they were probably some sort of relatives and moved on. A couple of years later when she passed, and we finally found out more about her family. The picture was of her mother, my great-grandmother, and my grandma's first son.
It turns out that she had a husband and two little boys when she was young who she left and never spoke of again. The only trace of them we found in all of her things was that one little picture.
10. A Stranger In The House
The secret is not revealed yet, but when I was in college and my parents got divorced, my dad gave me all the information on what to do if he passes. He told me where things are, and had me go to his bank to sign a document for access to his account after he passes. When we were leaving the bank, he looked at me very seriously and said something so ominous—I'll never forget it.
“Your mother is not who you think she is. Everything you need to know is in my deposit box.” I have no clue what he could be talking about—he never elaborated—and my mom laughed it off when I told her about it. Guess I’ll find out one day.
11. A Mixed Bag
My mom was the youngest of four girls. Her third eldest sister was in a fatal car accident when she was eighteen and my mom was seven. My grandfather, a strict and overprotective father, got up in the middle of the night and realized she wasn’t home. He had gone out and found her in the ditch a mile down the dirt road.
It was a tragedy that quietly affected him for the rest of his life. I was close to my grandpa and spent a lot of time with him. He lived a very fulfilling life. He was born on a dirt floor and worked his way into an independently wealthy life. He was a strict man with strong religious beliefs and always very generous.
He especially loved children and was known for having a pocketful of candy to hand out during church. He was very positive and joyful, but he was also very melancholic about people’s final days. He read the obituaries daily commenting on the people he had known from town. Then he lost my grandma, his bride of 56 years.
Less than a year later, two of his siblings passed within a month of each other, which left my grandpa and his youngest sister the last of eleven siblings. Within a year of that, he lost his dog who he’d had for over ten years. Grandpa never talked about depression and still found joy in his church and his grandchild.
But he occasionally made comments like, “I know my time will come when it is supposed to, but I’d be okay if I don’t make it to my next birthday.” He passed very unexpectedly in his sleep about two years after Grandma. My mom was their caretaker so had a hard time being in his bedroom, so I helped prior to his funeral.
We found a small tin box on top of his headboard. The box was stuffed full of newspaper clippings almost too full to close. Inside were the newspaper clippings from the obituaries of childhood acquaintances, his siblings, and my grandma. It seemed it was a collection of life events from the people who he’d cared about.
There was a picture of my newborn, several obituaries, the invitation to my wedding, a newspaper clipping that covered when my grandfather had run into my uncle’s church to warn everybody when a fire had started, the announcement of my cousin’s wedding, the obituary of the boss who’d given him his first job, and so on.
The box was stuffed with over 30 years’ worth of memories in the form of small photos and newspaper announcements. At the very bottom of the stack, we found something so harrowing—it's unforgettable. We found the clipping that began this whole collection: My aunt’s obituary, and her high school science fair ribbon. As we put everything back, it just painted a depressing picture.
After the loss of my aunt, life kept on. For several years, grandpa’s box was full of happy mementos of the important events like graduations, weddings, grandchildren, but those happy moments were slowly replaced by the obituaries of former colleagues and acquaintances, to childhood friends, and eventually more family.
Even the moments that brought him joy in life were surrounded by the grief of loss in the end. I think it had just brought some clarity on his state of mind throughout his life. One of the most remembered quirks that my grandfather had was always telling us how much he loved us. It showed his deep appreciation of life.
12. Not What You’d Expect From Grandma
My great grandmother, a never-cussing, radical bible-thumping, hymn-humming, rule-abiding woman ran moonshine while she was pregnant. If she was pulled over, the officers wouldn't ask her to get out or check the car, which made her perfect for running it. For six months, she supplied moonshine across a bunch of southern states while maintaining her daily housewife image and visiting her husband's store for appearances.
13. Where Are The Bodies?
My grandma was on a lot of pain relief medicine when she was near the end. She was a very eccentric person—but her deathbed confession was beyond disturbing. She confessed to taking a life. She wouldn’t give us any details, so we traced all her ex-husbands, partners, and any other likely candidates. Fortunately, no one was missing or had gone in a suspicious way.
But sometimes I wonder…
14. Quick Clean To Save Feelings
When I was a kid, my dad built an animal enclosure for our bunnies, guinea pigs, chinchillas, and hamsters. One morning I went outside and saw the enclosure was moved to the dirt and all the animals were gone! It looked like they dug under the gate and ran away. I thought that’s what happened but over 10 years later I was told the truth.
My mom told me that some psycho teenagers opened the cage and let their dog loose and it destroyed all our animals. She said that on that fateful morning, she and my dad had to quickly clean all the blood and body parts before any of us woke up. That’s one of the reasons we moved. I wish I never knew that.
15. Best. Dad. Ever.
This secret was revealed to me not when I reached adulthood, but when I was still a child. You see, when I was young, my father bought me a baby doll which I loved very much. In fact, I still have that doll now and I’m 28 years old. But there was something about this doll I never knew until one day, a month after my father’s passing, my mother told me a secret that floored me.
Apparently, when my dad had bought me the doll, he actually bought three other identical dolls and didn’t tell me. His plan was that when the one I was using had gotten damaged, he’d secretly replaced her with a new one. He did this three times and I never knew. I’m surprised I didn’t even notice when he switched the dolls.
So, my dad kept that secret from me and had planned to reveal it on my wedding day. He’d also kept the old dolls and was going to return them to me. Sadly, he passed before he could reveal it to me himself.
16. Follow Your Heart
I used to be a nursing student, though I decided to drop out in my second year because it wasn’t where my heart was. During my placement at the city hospital, I got to talking to an older man—he must have been like 88 then. He was talking about how I look exotic and always complimented my long hair etc., etc. For what it’s worth, I was never threatened or put off by it.
One day, he told me something I'll never forget—that I looked like the woman he wished he never let go. He said that he was completely happy about how his life turned out, loved his family and late wife, but he always thinks about this one woman he shouldn’t have let go by. He described this woman and his relationship with her as the perfect little blip in his life.
She was a petite Indian woman (I am a petite Pakistani woman) with long black hair and the most amazing smile. They met when he was 18 and she was 16. He was a jock at college and realized that her brother was taking the same classes as him, so he befriended the "dorky Indian guy" to get to his sister, who worked at the grocery store in town (that's how they met).
And it worked! They dated for six months before she randomly broke it off. It turned out, she was just uncertain about where their relationship would go and could go as an interfaith and interracial couple. The old man wished he fought harder, because her brother married a Chinese woman and if it weren't for his "jocky dumb attitude" he would have "gotten over" her decision to end things and fought harder for her to understand it would be all right.
Decades later, this petite, longhaired girl with an "amazing smile" (me) comes back into his life and he was flooded with the memories of the love of his life. He said the six months they were together were just the most deep and loving and peaceful months of his life. He should have been with her and she was the one who got away.
He said back then, you would fall in love in weeks and you loved hard, and that was simply that. Years later, I met a guy at work who ended up moving across the country for work. I remembered this old man and followed my heart. I never let my love get away, and I married him this summer. You should always at least try. Even if it doesn’t work out, go for it and find out so you never wonder.
17. Turns Out, He’s Totally Awesome
My great uncle served in the army during WWII. Everyone in our family knew this, but he never talked about his time in the army. After he passed, we found out he had a historian write and verify his memoirs. Turns out he was totally awesome. He served in the 1st Infantry Division. He landed on the beach on D-Day, fought through waves of German officers, and risked his life to help a photographer retrieve a camera he dropped. But that wasn't all.
His unit moved inland and he took out a large number of German officers as he had a weird talent for spotting movement in trees. After D-Day, he served behind enemy lines as a spy for the Allies, where he was captured and sent to a concentration camp. When the camp was finally taken by the Allies, he had withered to 80 pounds and needed to have two thirds of his colon removed because the starvation drove him to eat an egg he found in the dirt.
When he came back home, he got a job in a factory where he worked until he retired and passed naturally of old age. The most surprising part of all? He left explicit instructions that no one was to read his memoirs until after he passed. We all knew him as the quirky old uncle who told the same joke at every family reunion. We had no idea that he was a bonafide hero who’s actually been portrayed in video games and movies.
18. Dying Regrets
While I was growing up, my mother ran a nursing home. So, from the ages five to 10, I spent every weekend with the residents because I had no school. Since I was a kid, these old-timers often confessed stuff they thought I wouldn’t understand. It happened lots of times, but two of them really stick out. One is funny, and the other isn’t.
A woman was dying; she was maybe about 96 years old. She even had her last burst of energy where she thought she was “better” (this is common). A black delivery man came with some flowers. After he left she looked at me with tears in her eyes and said, “I can’t believe I’m dying without having been with a man of color.”
The second one was while I was reading bible verses to a resident. She suddenly looked at me and said: “I’m so sorry. I didn’t mean to drop that baby in the well.”
19. She’s Not My Daughter
When I was 24 years old, I went with my father to have our wills and other important documents updated. That is when he told me that if he passed, "someone" may come claiming to be his daughter, but that it wasn't true and instructed me on how to properly defend his estate from such an event. He wouldn't give me any details though, and I just dropped it.
Then, about a year ago, the supposed daughter found and contacted me on Facebook. I didn't respond at first, because I thought it was some junk friend request, but they also contacted my mother, who verified that it was who they said they were. So, yeah, I had a short conversation with her through Messenger. She sounded honest enough, but I was cautious and skeptical.
That’s when I brought it up to my father, who got really really mad and told me the following...
Basically, my father moved away from his dysfunctional, poor family in Florida to Texas where he had a job lined up. He was out on his own and finally making money, though not much. I don't know how he met this woman, but they did get together and got married within a short time. She was quick to move in and share everything with him.
The woman soon got pregnant and my presumed sister was born. My father loved her. In fact, I recently found pictures of the two of them together, and he was definitely happy. Then "something" happened. From my father’s rantings, I can piece together that his wife took almost everything he earned, ran up a lot of credit debt, and that sort of thing.
When he complained to her about it, her family started intimidating him. To quote him, "they were the type of people, who would show up at your work causing trouble, and destroy your car as they left, just because they didn't like you." Now, by this time his daughter was almost three years old, and besides these supposed events, they had been living happily the entire time.
Surprisingly, it was his wife who started the divorce. Her family had money, and my father—who was alone—did not, and they went hard on him in false accusations. My father was still fighting though, but when it looked like he might "win", they claimed that his daughter was not his and how his wife had always been sleeping with some other man.
It was apparently convincing enough that my father still believes that to be true to this day. There was never a paternity test—as far as I know, anyway—but my father apparently signed away any claim to be her father and he wasn't ordered to pay any child support. But that wasn’t the last we heard of her. No, not at all.
According to my mother, his supposed daughter would show up at our house or apartment alone occasionally, trying to talk with my father, even once on my 9th birthday—though I don't remember her. However, that strikes me as a little odd, as she couldn't have been more than 12 years old at the time. I guess someone would've had to know where we lived and driven her there.
We are still friends on Facebook, but we kind of have an understanding that we may or may not be brother and sister. The only way we would know for sure is to have a sibling paternity test, which could let us know within a reasonable probability, but not for certain, unless my father participated too. And we pretty much decided that we couldn't put him through that as he seems to be very traumatized by whatever happened back then.
She is a mother and has a caring family now though. Supposedly, her mother remarried, then something happened to her mother, who's no longer in her life. Her step-father took her in, and she hasn't had any contact with her biological family. I suppose that is part of the reason why she wanted to get to know my father, he is the only one she knows that could be her biological father.
20. Liquid Assets
My friend is an only child, so when her mom passed, I thought I could help out clearing her mom’s place. Her mom hoarded a lot and was in her 80s, so it was a lot. My friend wasn’t in the room when I found something pretty nasty: A 40-year-old jar full of spermicide in some old trunk. I knew how old it was because she was divorced in her 40s.
My friend told me that her mother never got over the failed marriage. Plus, there was no need for birth control by that age. I didn’t get it at all but quickly tossed the glass container in the garbage bag before my friend came back. I never told her about it or that it had separated into layers.
21. Everyone Was Fooled
My mom's step-grandpa told everyone he was an electrician and that he was always being called out of town to do various repair jobs. After he passed, the family received a letter from the president of the United States, revealing that he was actually a demolitions expert and worked in some sort of special ops squad for the United States. Even his wife had no idea.
22. Homewrecker Revealed
My mom's parents divorced not long before I was born, then two years later my grandfather remarried a woman I’ll call Patty. Then, my biological grandmother passed, so, when I was growing up, my grandfather's new wife, Patty, was basically my grandmother. Now, Patty is a little weird. She means well but tends to put her foot in her mouth and ask people weirdly personal questions. Still, she's family, so whatever.
Except, growing up, my mom and her two siblings hated Patty. When I was younger it was kind of minor, just occasional snide comments behind her back, but as I got older it became increasingly clear that they couldn't stand the woman. It was always so odd to me—yeah she was a goof, but whatever, lots of people in our family had quirks.
Then, when I was in my 20s, my grandfather passed. As I was sitting down with my mom, going over some old photos of my grandad, there was a picture of Patty that my mom immediately made a rude comment about. I finally asked, "Why do you guys hate her so much?" My mom looked at me, confused, then realization dawned on her. "Oh, we never told you, did we?"
So, it turned out that the reason my biological grandparents got divorced was because my grandfather had been cheating on my grandmother with Patty. This had been going on for more than a decade before the divorce. My mother and her siblings didn't hate her because she was weird, they hated her because she was a homewrecker.
It seemed kind of unfair to me that they directed all their hate at Patty since my grandfather was just as, if not more, guilty, but I guess that's what people do. The funeral I think actually kind of gave my Mom and her siblings a chance to put those bad feelings to rest, because after it, they all started being a lot nicer and more civil towards Patty.
23. Papa Don’t Preach
We were going through my grandfather’s things after he passed and found letters between him and my nan from when they were young. Nan was only 14 when she got pregnant, and my grandpa was 16. She was sent away somewhere to have the baby while her family kept insisting that they put the baby, my father, up for adoption.
In the letters, my grandparents talked about how much they loved each other and how they were fighting to keep the baby. Grandpa was working extra hours to save money and then spending his free time building furniture for their future home. He wrote about how the boys at work made fun of him for being under my Nan’s thumb.
But he wrote that he didn’t care what they said because of how much he loved her and their unborn baby. These letters really helped my dad feel like he was wanted. While he was growing up, he felt like he had ruined their lives.
24. Babysitting Boss
My mom regularly says things without thinking and will reveal truths she forgot she told me about. When I was a kid, her boss would babysit me at her work so she didn’t have to get daycare. He would always put on the Horton Hears A Who VHS and let me look through his rock collection. He was great and we thought of him as family. So, when he passed from illness after we moved, I was very bummed.
A few years later, I was at my mom’s house, and something reminded me of him. I mentioned him to my mom and she says: “Oh yeah, it’s so crazy that he took his own life.” I told my mom that she was wrong, that he’d gotten sick. Then she told me the truth. They’d lied about his illness and he’d actually hung himself. It was very sad that someone who brought so much joy to my life was going through such a struggle and I never knew.
25. Secret Husband
My great-grandma, who passed on a few years ago at the ripe age of 98, had a deathbed confession that really shocked my family. I wasn’t there for it myself, but she admitted that my great-grandpa, who we all thought was her first and only husband, was actually her second husband. So, of course, everyone was wondering who the first was.
The first husband was a man who she had two kids with but he was abusive. That was the first shock. The second one was a real doozy. You see, one night she took the two kids to the orphanage and left them there. She then went back and shot her husband. Next, she grabbed some valuables from the house and burned the house to the ground.
She ran off to another state and hoped that everyone in town would think that the entire family perished in the fire. Her last words were that she always wished she could have found her first two children later in life, so that she could explain why she left them behind.
26. A Secret To Protect
When I was a kid, I used to be friends with the woman next door, who was about 20 years old. I’ll call her Anne. Anne was my best friend because she would read to me, or play with me or take me for walks. One morning, I woke up and her dad was at my house and gave me a painting she made. Then my parents told me that Anne had to move to another city for work and she left me the painting to remember her.
Sometime later, we moved to another city, but then we returned, years after when my dad passed. I was surprised that Anne’s dad and sister were still living there. They told me the horrible truth about dear Anne. Anne hadn’t moved for work, she’d perished in a car accident back then. They decided to lie to me because they didn’t want to hurt me.
27. Secret Baby
I do estate sales for a living and have found plenty of weird things. But the one that sticks out in my mind the most is when we found a fetus in a jar. It was hidden in the back of a bathroom cabinet. I assume it was from a miscarriage. The couple was in their late 80s. There was no telling how long it had been there.
28. Not What You Want To Hear
When I was in college, a friend of mine passed suddenly. I wouldn’t say he was one of my best friends, but we hung out with the same group every weekend. The reason we weren’t especially close was really just because the guy had more friends than anyone I have ever met, but in a really genuine way. He made everyone feel special. He was the life of every party and the center of all of the best stories. He was all around just a fun guy that everyone enjoyed spending time with.
A few years after he passed, I ended up becoming friends with a girl who I recognized as being a part of his close inner circle from when we were all in school together. In fact, his passing was one of the first things we ever spoke about. Several months later, we had become quite close and that's when she made the most shocking confession...Apparently, just days before he passed, he had violated her when he was highly intoxicated.
She never told anyone because she was afraid to disgrace his memory while so many of her closest friends were grieving. To say this changed my perception of him is an understatement, and I have a hard time knowing how to feel about his passing. Sometimes, that makes me feel guilty. I can only imagine the trauma that my friend endured through that grieving process.
29. Parents’ Princess
In my grandma's last days, she requested that mum stay with her alone, and it was only then that she revealed the secret she'd been keeping for decades: She revealed that my mum wasn't her biological kid. My grandma confessed that she had bought my mum from a child trafficking ring, which was common in China, because she had tried for many years and still could not get pregnant. My mother cried a lot, not only for the unimaginable pain that her biological parents likely went through in losing a baby, but also for the fact that my grandparents have gone beyond to treat my mum as their little princess.
They literally did treat my mum as their own. They were never abusive and only gave her the very best in life. They even willingly sent my mum to the US for a university education even though they aren't rich by any means.
30. Deep Dark Diaries
My great aunt passed about a year ago. She was in her mid 70s. We were unpacking all of her things when we found a set of her diaries, some from many years ago and some just before her passing. In her diaries, she had mentioned that she despised her sister, whom none of us liked anyway, and didn’t like a lot of my cousins.
Most shockingly, she kept on talking about a man who she called, “monster.” This man had been harassing her and harming her for years. She never mentioned it nor indicated that anything was wrong. We suspect that it was her boss. I loved her dearly, she was so sweet.
31. Game Console Bubble Burst
My mom and dad were in high school when they had me. They were broken up and on bad terms before I was even born. My dad moved to California for the Marines and school. I stayed in the South with my mom. My grandmother—my dad's mom—stepped in to fill the void my dad left and helped my mom raise me. My dad was the classic estranged father.
I'd maybe see my dad for a few days every year or two, but by the time I was close to becoming a teenager, there'd be years between visits. When I was younger, I always had him on a pedestal even though I hardly ever saw him or spoke to him. But I could always count on hearing from him when a new game console came out.
I've been a huge gamer my entire life, so my dad would always buy and send whatever the newest console/gaming innovation was at the time. It's always been our thing, starting with a Gameboy Color and Pokemon Gold all the way to the PS4 Pro. Even over the last few months, he had been talking about getting me the new Xbox.
My grandmother lost her life last month, so I've had to see and speak with my dad a lot more than usual. He told me he had been having trouble finding an Xbox but assured me that it would happen once everything settled down. I was talking with my Mom afterward and I mentioned the conversation in passing. She couldn’t help herself...and spilled a secret that broke my heart.
She told me that my grandmother had been buying everything for me and my dad was just taking the credit.
32. Get A Room!
My mother worked as a nurse in the biggest hospital in Copenhagen. A man is terminally ill with cancer, has his wife, children and entire family next to him. He decides before he passes that he was gonna phone the girl he was cheating with on his wife, to meet up at the hospital when the entire family was there. My mother had to move the entire family into another room when she showed up, because of the massive shouting and hysteria.
33. Heroes Aren’t Perfect
When I was 16, I got my learner's permit and I decided to test for my license at 17. I had just gotten my motorcycle working and wanted to be able to ride it, but I needed the driver's license portion to attach the endorsement to. Once I had my license, my mom told me that I got one free call: she didn't care what state I was in, or how messed up I was. It didn't matter, she would come pick me up no questions asked.
About a month after that, I got a call from her at like 9 pm and she said she went out with a few friends and accidentally drank too much and needed me to come get her. Because she gave me one free call, she figured that she should also get one free call. This was weird because she never drank while growing up. She had one bottle of something or other on the top of the fridge and it was there since I could remember.
I said sure and took a bus out to the restaurant, so I could drive the car back. While in the car she started to tell me about her night with friends and how nice it was to go out. I could tell that she definitely had way too much by how she talked. Then she said something that I will never forget.
"Alice, you were my biggest mistake. I had you hoping to save the marriage with your father, if I had known children were career enders, I wouldn't have let my family push me into having a child. I would have focused on being happy instead." Then she kind of mumbled a bit and fell asleep. I was upset but I managed to get home safely and carry my mom to her bed.
I spent the night with a pack of razors thinking to myself that if I did something bad, it would only make her sacrifice a waste. The next morning when she woke up, she asked me what happened the previous night and I told her she called me from the restaurant, so I took a bus and drove her home in her car so she wouldn't have to go back to get it. I was thanked and she told me that I was the best kid ever.
About a month later, I asked if she ever regretted having children and she told me her kids were the light of her world. And that's when I realized: The secret she revealed to me is how we as a society treat ourselves and others. We avoid hard conversations and we avoid owning up to mistakes. We shy away from grief and sadness and topics on negative emotions make us uncomfortable.
It's far easier to just lie and pretend nothing is wrong than to acknowledge the feelings we have. We hide in ignorance and thrive in recklessly abandoning honesty. I also learned that growing up, our parents are our heroes. She survived 2008 with multiple kids, working in the housing industry. I always considered her my hero, and I still do. But I also learned that day that heroes aren't perfect.
34. Dissing Kathy
When I was a kid, my dad would take my brother and me to a woman named Kathy’s house. Kathy would buy us computer games and stuff so, of course, we loved her at the time. The weird thing was that my mother really hated Kathy and I never understood why. When I turned 18 my mom told me the secret about Kathy: She was having an affair with my dad.
Weirdly, Kathy ended up marrying my dad's best friend. As an adult, I was never nice to her and my dad would give me grief about it. I finally told him that I knew about her and that mom had told me everything. He just said, "Oh, alright then." He never gave me trouble about it again.
35. Throw Me A Bone
When my grandma passed, I helped my mom clean up before her brother could get over to do his part. My grandma had been widowed for about 10 years at that point, lived in a senior apartment complex, and was pushing 90 but still very full of life, so it wouldn't surprise me if she'd had a few trysts with other residents.
I was cleaning out her drawers and came across some leather subjection stuff. Like, some serious stuff that I don't even know what it was for but could assume what its purpose may have been. I hesitated on pulling more out of the drawer because it was personal, plus I didn't really need the mental image of my grandma's kinks.
My mom saw me pause and looked at what I was holding, which was a harness-type thing, and asked what it was. I told her I wasn't sure, and my mom assumed it was a strange dog walking harness to help the elderly have more control. To this day I don't know if my mom knew what it was, I'm too scared to rehash that memory.
But she and I both definitely knew that my grandma hated dogs.
36. DNA Test Reveals Secret
For no good reason besides curiosity, my sister decided to take a DNA test to get some insight into her ancestry. She got her results back and had zero percent Italian—even though our dad is 100% Italian. My sister didn’t confront my parents right away and instead decided to wait until I took the test and received my results.
Four weeks later, I got my results back and sure enough, I also had zero percent Italian. The test actually identified my biological father, who isn’t my dad. My parents finally revealed the secret when my sister intentionally let it slip that the two of us were waiting for our DNA results. I’m 38 and it had never once come up. However, my parents' reasoning completely shocked us.
My parents had had fertility issues and went to a sperm bank. I’m honestly not sure they ever would have said anything.
37. Same Feelings
My grandmother had divorced my mom’s dad back in the ‘70s. While Grandpa had a live-in girlfriend, Grandma never dated. I’m not sure if she ever tried to, or if she just didn’t want to date again. After losing her, Mom and I prepared with her siblings the house, furniture, and other items to be sold for an estate sale.
I was browsing on Grandma’s computer, and a banner ad showed up for a dating site. It wasn’t any regular site; it was a lesbian dating site. Banner ads only come up based on search history. I occasionally think of it these days, especially as I am a woman married to another woman. How would Grandma have taken the news?
38. Visit Cut Short
When I was seven, my dad lived in a different country for work and so my eight-year-old brother and I went to visit him for two weeks. Well, we were supposed to stay two weeks, but I recall not staying over a week. Other people from my family came to get us late at night, and after a day or two, we flew back home.
No one told us why we were going home early. Once we arrived home, my mom and a lady from the school sat us down at the kitchen table and announced that our father had passed. My mom told us that it was due to some medical reasons or whatever, but it’s only years later that I found out the truth.
When I was 21 or 22, my father’s son from another marriage, who I’d only seen as a kid, suddenly came back briefly into my life. He told me that my dad had actually passed from gunshots while he was at work in his office. So, my mom didn’t actually tell me herself, and when I told her that I knew, she was upset at my stepbrother for telling me the truth about my father’s demise.
39. I’ll Take Cherished Moments For 200
When we were young, my parents would sit with me and my sister each night and we would team up, boys against girls, and play Jeopardy along with the show. We had the best times. Of course, I always won with my dad, but we let my mom and sis win every now and then. Great memories of my childhood were made. We would laugh and get mad and taunt each other.
I later found out that my parents had been getting high before each show—every night for years. I think they were having more fun than I was.
40. Life Enhancement
We were about to finally sell my grandmother’s house after nine years since her passing, she received a letter from the company that insured her chest implants. It said that her warranty was set to expire that year. It’s crazy that the sweet old lady who baked pies was actually rocking a silicone rack the whole time.
41. Two Massive Shocks
Around when I was 14, my dad sat me and my brother down and revealed that we had an older half-sister. I thought he was joking at first, but essentially before he and my mom got together he had a relationship with another woman. When he broke up with her, she immediately moved away and blocked all contact. What my father didn’t know was that she’d been pregnant when they broke up.
So, this wasn’t my dad waiting until we were old enough to know, he actually found out around the same time we did. My half-sister messaged him through Facebook and revealed she was his child. This was a massive shock for him, and then he got another one: he also had a grandchild from her—aged two.
42. An Eerie Untold Story
I always knew my grandfather immigrated from Poland at the end of WWII, but I never knew the details. A few years back, I was cleaning out my grandparents’ basement after both of them had passed, and found an old Manila envelope tucked way back on a shelf. Inside of the envelope, we found all kinds of paperwork detailing how he had been rescued from a German concentration camp and his documents that brought him here. But that wasn't all.
I then found out that as the youngest member of his large family, he watched them all gunned down by Germans who told them If they could run across a field and reach the trees, they’d be safe. None of his family members made it. It was all really terrible, but fascinating. It was a shame he never talked about any of it, but it was obviously something he’d rather forget.
43. The Longest Friend Zone In History
This story happened in Germany, just after WWII. Ruth was a young German, and Feliçien, a French soldier. Feliçien fell head over heels in love with Ruth and even brought many thoughtful gifts, such as a big juicy ham for her family. They eventually got married and, even though his family and friends were in the south of France, they stayed in Germany.
The couple stayed together, through several miscarriages and even infertility. They never had children. Once in their old age, Ruth passed first, around 2010. On her deathbed, she told him: “You know Feliçien—I always liked you, but I never loved you.”
44. Burial Goes Awry
A relative had a horse when I was little and I thought it was my horse. One day it passed and was buried. I wasn't told at the time what really happened. It turns out, when they dug the hole, they didn't dig it deep enough. They didn't realize this until the horse was in the hole with all four legs sticking stiffly out the top. They came up with a solution—but it was absolutely brutal.
They cut the horse's legs off with a chainsaw.
45. If Walls Could Talk
My grandfather wasn’t really in our lives. He mistreated my grandmother while they were married. After they divorced, he moved across the country and became a truck driver. Growing up, my mom never saw him except for one time. He was sober, and they didn’t bond much because she admitted his dry humor made it difficult.
But when my sister and I were born, she made an effort to send him pictures and Christmas cards. Over the years, he never reached out, so we just assumed he didn’t care for us. It didn’t matter; we were closer to his brother. So, when he passed, my mom went to help his brother sort through his things. It blew her mind.
Every single wall was covered in our baby photos and cards that we’d sent him throughout the years along with others from my aunts and uncles. It broke her heart because she thought for her entire life that he hated his past or just disliked us. She realized that he probably didn’t know exactly how to interact with us.
46. The Reason Revealed Itself
After my stepdad passed, we found all the reasons why. The same night, we called his best friend who told us that my stepdad spent most of the days at his house. To his friend, my stepdad said that he worked at night. He put on working clothes and went back home to my mom pretending to have worked all day. His work told us that he was fired months ago.
Days after his passing, letters kept pouring in. They were all bills...thousands of euros he had to pay. In the trash outside, there were clipped up bills he had intercepted before my mom got home every day. My mom glued every one of them together to have a better view of everything. He had also lent money in her name, about $15k, which she had to pay back because she couldn't prove that he did it.
At the funeral home, they found out that he still had his teeth. He had never had them pulled at the dentist like he said he did. It was because he hadn't been paying for health insurance. He pretended a couple times over the prior months to be in real pain and that his throat was so sore that he could barely talk. We think he must have screamed for hours in his car or something to sound like that to pretend it to us.
To his parents, he said that he had a new car the week before and drove to them. The car was a loan. He also said that he found a wallet with 300 dollars and had it in cash in his hands. We had such a fun day with that money. My mom found out after he passed that he just cashed it from his bank. He must have felt so horrible about this money issue and knew no way out of it. We still miss him, he was a very funny guy and he taught me a lot in my teenage years. But boy, he did leave a mess behind.
47. Class Trips Cancelled
My mom was a teacher and she one day moved my sister and me to the same school where she taught—no reason given. She also gave us no reason for why the other teachers were always so bitter towards us. It felt really weird and uncalled for. It was, however, my father who, years later, finally told us the reason why we were so hated at the school.
He told us that my mom used to swipe all the money for school trips. Apparently, there was a big scandal between all the teachers, but we had no idea. The worst years of my life—finally explained.
48. She Stuck It To The Man
My grandmother was definitely the stereotypical housewife type. She never talked unless she was spoken to, cooked, cleaned, was a perfect stay at home mom, and had a slightly overbearing husband. After she passed, we went through her junk room and found dozens of books on feminist literature. We also found her scandalous journal entries.
In her journal, she talks about voting democratic in each and every election, which was expressly prohibited by her husband. She also volunteered at the Girl Scout Office to help girls get better opportunities. It was really cool to find out that my grandma was a secret feminist and silently but surely "sticking it to the man."
49. Secret Life
I learned all kinds of family secrets after my dad passed. I guess my mom thought it was now okay to let loose some stuff about my dad. My mom told me that when she and my dad were dating, my dad liked to smoke weed. This rocked my world because he was super uptight and strict. It turns out, he actually planted a couple of plants at my mom’s parent’s house and they never knew it. But that was only the tip of the iceberg.
I also learned that when my parents were engaged, my dad had an affair. My mom ended up beating the woman up and then broke the engagement off with my dad. He came to my grandparents every night for months begging my mom to come back to him. She eventually gave in.
The wife of my acquaintance got covid and she was really sick. Almost all the doctors told them that she wouldn't make it, so she finally revealed her darkest secret. She confessed that she had been cheating on him for about ten years with one close friend of his and that maybe their last child isn't his but his friend's. The lady survived and that poor stupid sucker kept his marriage as if nothing had happened.
51. Great Aunt’s Secret Ingredient
My great aunt lost her life a couple of years ago. She was suffering from viral encephalitis and fluctuated in and out of consciousness. It was truly painful to watch. Although a lot of family tended to be around her in those last days, I once happened to be alone with her when she made some fairly odd remarks, which I’ve kept to myself ever since.
On the day in question, I was playing games on my phone in her hospital room when she started to audibly mutter to herself. It became more urgent and intense—eventually, she explicitly called me to her side. Her eyes looked huge and confused, I doubt she even knew who I was. She spat out her words, most of which were barely comprehensible, putting particular emphasis on the words “boy” and “ingredient.”
I sat there for 15 minutes, listening to her erratic account of, as I finally gathered, how she used to cook eggs in a very weird way. She said she sometimes used to cook eggs in the urine of a stable boy. She insisted that the boy was handsomely compensated for his services. By this time she was crying and couldn’t stop.
I didn’t know if I should put this crazy story down to her state of mind at this old age or what. It was so bizarre. But I ended up googling this a few weeks later. Well, there indeed exists a traditional “dish” in China described in the West as Virgin Boy Egg. Apparently, this concept had fascinated her and she had wanted to try it—but that’s not the worst part.
That’s when I realized she frequently recreated this herself and served it to her family (which sometimes included my younger self) without explaining what it was. I am not sure if she felt shame or enthusiasm about this (she often stammered something about “the secret ingredient”), but it quite obviously haunted her towards the very end of her life.
52. Missing In Action
After my dad passed, my aunty casually brought up one Christmas that my dad had gone missing for two years. This happened when he was twenty and nobody ever knew where he went. One day, he just reappeared "looking like Jesus" and never explained where he went or what happened. He then continued on living his life, and literally no one ever mentioned it again so I never got to ask him about it. So wild.
53. A Hidden Hero
My dad was an Air Force pilot who passed in a crash during a plane malfunction. I grew up thinking he couldn’t do anything and couldn’t land and that was it. 20 years after he passed, I found out the disturbing truth: he had the choice between jettisoning to safety and risking the plane landing on the base and harming people, or steering the plane as far away from people as he could and going down with it. I hate that I grew up without a dad, but I’m glad he at least passed saving people.
54. Just Call Me Daddy
I helped an ex clean out her stepdad's house in the early 1990s after he suddenly passed. This was the man she had considered her father. He and her mom married when she was very young and she never knew her bio dad. He’d been the most amazing husband and father. He never treated her differently than her half-siblings.
He doted on her mother only to lose her five years before he passed. We went to his house to go sort his things out. My ex and I were in his hobby room that was full of radios, small electric motors, model trains, and other stuff like that. Then her younger sister came running down the stairs with something to tell us.
She had been in the guest room and found a box of naughty toys, light subjection gear, leather straps, along with a photo album from the 70s and 80s. The album had pictures of him and her mother at switching partners parties and of people who she knew as aunts and uncles partially clothed with white powder in lines in front of them.
Most of the photos corresponded with her and her siblings’ birthdays. That was a pretty fun day.
55. He Saw Deceased People
It was awful what army men went through in WWI and WWII. My grandad worked, I think, the radio on the airplanes and I think he was the leader of his particular group that flew that plane. One day they were shot down and the plane crashed. Everyone perished in the fire—except him. They found him after—wandering deliriously in the field.
They tried to make him go back up in another plane and he lost it, full-on post-disturbing stress disorder. Then they dishonorably discharged him because he refused to fly again. My mum says that on his deathbed, my grandad made a chilling remark. He said he could see his men. He said he saw his men staring at him at the foot of the bed and that they were furious with him for not saving them…
My mum says he used to scream in the night from the nightmares.
56. Guess Who’s Coming To Dinner
My parent’s secret was that I had a much older half-sister. Apparently, my father had got some girl knocked up in high school. Her parents didn't like him and thought they were too young to raise a kid, so they just packed up and moved. He knew she existed, but never tried to locate her and just moved on with his life.
After I was in college, my half-sister had contacted my dad and they got together. Well nobody bothered to mention this fact to me until I came home from college for Thanksgiving and this strange woman was sitting at the table and my dad said, "Meet your sister."
My uncle had all his VHS tapes with my dad when he moved away. My mom was tired of storing them for him, so she put them in a garage sale. None of them were marked with anything except for numbers. My uncle was kind of weird in a creepy way–never married, no kids, never dated, basically a loner and just, well, weird. Well, my mom sold them to older ladies at the church.
Mind you, this was a strict Baptist church where she was a Sunday School teacher. These ladies were excited to see what was on them. My mom warned them, "now those are my brother-in-law's tapes, so I don't know what’s on them." Later, my brother came home from work. He found out what she’d done and asked if she had really sold my uncle’s tapes.
Mom told him she did. My brother freaked out and told her that the tapes were of some serious adult, non-Baptist church-friendly content. We still laugh about it until this day.
58. The World Had Different Plans
My mom passed while giving birth to me, but I just found out something else a few months ago. Apparently, I had a twin sister that also didn’t make it that day. She wasn't really strong enough to survive—I think I took all the good stuff inside. It would be cool having a mom and a twin sister but the world had different plans I guess.
59. Aunt Ain’t Daughter
My aunt watched in horror as her elderly mother took a terrible fall down the stairs. As if that wasn’t shocking enough, as the woman lay dying at the bottom of the stairs, she made a startling confession. She told my aunt that she wasn't her biological mother. She said that her oldest sister was actually her mother.
The sister had gotten pregnant too young and the mom said it was hers. A common way of handling it back then. She revealed it in her very last breath.
60. Straight Laced Dad Was Not
When I turned 18 my dad told me how he’d spent the better part of 10 years as a drug smuggler. Mostly coke and weed that they would get in South America, put on small planes to land somewhere in the Caribbean, and then move to Florida on super-fast boats they’d only run at night. He didn’t tell me all the insane stories I’m sure he had, but he did tell me a couple.
He was stuck in a bar in Colombia for an entire day during an attempted coup and how more than once they traded munitions they’d taken from the FARC for unpermitted substances. This was all especially crazy since to me because he was pretty much the most straight-laced dude alive.
61. Personality Lost
So I broke my femur when I was two years old, and although I’d always known about the injury, I learned something later that really surprised me. When I was 16 or 17 my parents told me that the injury kind of changed my personality. I guess I used to be super talkative and extroverted (at least for that age), but after being surrounded by doctors and nurses for days and weeks on end, apparently, I kinda closed off. And I’ve been that way ever since.
I’d always thought I was an introvert from day one, but I guess I originally had a different personality. I’ve slowly become more outgoing over the last few years, but it’s strange to think that I could’ve been a completely different person in that regard.
62. The Son Who Never Visited
So, I was adopted by a rich family. This couple already had a biological son, who was much older than me. But there was something totally weird about the son. He never visited my adoptive parents. I always wondered why. Eventually, my adoptive father told me that his son had tried to end him. I was beyond shocked—but there was more.
Fast forward a year later, and my father is in the hospital. He recently suffered an undisclosed accident and the only people with him were me and my adoptive mother. My mother asks why their son hasn’t come and my father starts to tell her why. It turns out, he’d been mistreating his son since he was five. My mother was shocked and ran out crying.
I witnessed the entire conversation. Ninety-one minutes later, my father was gone.
63. Lie Was Not A Lie
When I was a kid, my dad accidentally ran over a raccoon with his car. It had a young one with it that wasn't hit, so we adopted the baby raccoon. We adored it, but we were not at all equipped to care for it. There was no lock or cage that could stop this thing. It was very clever, strong, and curious. It got into cupboards and ate food and trash, and we'd find its turds in the most random places.
One day my dad sat me down and told me that my raccoon had "gone to live on a farm." I was old enough to know what that meant, and I was heartbroken. But just a few years ago, I was telling this story to my husband and my dad interrupted me and said that he literally, actually gave my raccoon away to a work acquaintance of his that had a farm and a lot of wooded property.
The raccoon had become so accustomed to humans it constantly broke into the man's house and ate his food, and got enormously fat, and lived a long ornery raccoon life.
64. Half Brother Visits
When I was 13 years old, my parents were forced to reveal a secret to me. It turned out that I had a half-brother I didn’t know about. They had adopted this guy when he was a baby, but I didn’t even meet him until I was a teenager. If that wasn’t bad enough, the reason they had to tell me about him was much, much worse.
So, my half-brother had become an officer of the law and he’d arrived at our house to take away my father. He didn’t keep in touch, and I don’t blame him.
65. A Dog’s Life
I had a patient who I was in the room with when her doctor explained she only had a few weeks to live. I knew her well, and spent quite a bit of time talking to her up to the news. In the days that followed, she seemed to have accepted she was dying. She lived this beautiful, independent, and successful life, maybe not money successful, but just plain happy.
Anyways, when I was helping her to the tub on day 10 since receiving the news, she just broke down crying and couldn't stop crying. What she told me made me nearly burst into tears on the spot. She talked about how much she wished she didn't put her dog down, since they could have passed together. I guess she put her elderly dog down a few days before going into the hospital.
She knew her life was over, so she put him down first. She hated herself for it and for the fact she blew the opportunity for them to spend their last moments together. Really heartbreaking to watch, to hear that unfold. She passed early in the morning two days later. I took a couple of mental health days off after she passed and spent some time looking up dogs to adopt and new jobs to apply for.
66. They Played The Field—A Lot
I was a teenager when my parents revealed that my dad had been married before. Twice. And my mom had been engaged four times and broken it off every time. The family was always saying how amazing my parents’ relationship was and I just thought they were complimenting them. But turns out they were low-key shocked that they stayed together. They’ve been married almost fifty years.
67. Christmas Eve Confession
So, one Christmas Eve, my grandmother was very sick and in hospital. She called my mom and grandfather into the hospital room. I believe they had a conversation that included the words, “You're not allowed to pass on Christmas and ruin it for the kids.” Because she was kind of awful. But it turns out that my grandmother had something more important to confess.
My grandmother confessed to my mother that she was not, in fact, her mother. The funny thing is, my mom already suspected this. She looks exactly like her father's second wife—and so do her kids, me included! My mom had asked her a few dozen times in her life if she was the second wife's. She was always told: “No, no, you're definitely mine.”
So how did this happen? Honestly, no one knows. Everyone involved in the decision has been gone half a decade or longer, and to say the family dynamics were complicated would be an understatement. The best guess I have was it was either a “pretend you didn't have a child outside of the marriage” deal, as they were Catholic.
Or maybe it was some other reason that probably wouldn't play out today. So, who knows?
68. Chucky Got Chucked
My sister and I used to play with a doll. We named it, talked to it, and everything. One day the doll disappeared and we were very upset. Many years later my mother told me the truth: she’d thrown it away. She did this because she saw the horror movie "Chucky" and the doll looked just like the one in the movie. My mom had freaked out and couldn't sleep until she threw my beloved sweetheart away.
But yeah, I had to hide that I was upset when she told me because I was a teenage boy in a country where they're obsessed with masculinity, so I couldn't say "oh this makes me really upset." Instead, I just stopped talking about it. I'm actually 25 now, and still miss it and feel bad about it. Maybe that's why I've never wanted a child because I lost one at a very young age and can't do it again.
69. Just An Example
My sister was going through our late grandmother’s purse and came across a birth announcement for a little girl we’d never heard of. The parents were listed as my aunt and uncle. She thought she’d uncovered some deep family secret about an infant who had passed, but then we actually did the math, and it was impossible.
The child could not have existed at all because the listed birth date was just a few weeks off from my aunt’s son. The pregnancies couldn’t have had possibly both happened. So, we asked my mom about it. She told us that it was just a birth announcement prototype that my aunt had printed up while she was still pregnant.
They filled in the birth date as the due date, signed it with their names, and randomized the not-yet-known information such as the baby’s gender, name, and weight. So, the little girl in the birth announcement never even existed, yet my eccentric grandmother carried the card around with her anyway for whatever reason.
70. What’s In A Name?
I’m not going to share my actual name because it's not a common one with a very specific spelling. I've heard other variations of it, but not the way mine is spelled. I was told that my father "made it up" when he was naming me at the hospital. The first letter of my name is the same as his and I just assumed he wanted to go along that route. Why my mom didn't have a say in anything, who knows.
I'm now in my thirties, female, and I recently found out the truth about my name. My sister told me that I was actually named after my dad's ex-girlfriend. I'm not mad about it, but it's so crazy to think that after all these years this is what the truth is. My parents don't know that I know. To be quite honest, it would make sense why I felt like my mom favored my sister over me because maybe I'm a reminder for something not so good for her.
71. Tell Us How You Really Feel
One of my patients at the hospice where I was working was a bed-bound woman in her 90s. Sadly, she was generally unresponsive but she occasionally had flashes of recognition and engagement. It’s hard to gauge the level to which unresponsive patients are detached from their surroundings, so they encourage family members to keep their company in hopes of soothing the patient.
Now this patient was from a US state that prided itself on its state university—and the university’s football team. The woman’s family had attended this university for four or five generations. You could call it a family tradition that everyone attended this university and it would be a big deal if someone decided to attend somewhere else.
Well, that’s exactly what happened. During her hospice care, my patient's great-granddaughter was the first in their family to decide to go to a different school—the rival state’s university, in fact. Her family was supportive of her decision but often joked about her being the “rebel” or “Judas” or what-have-you.
One day, they were all sitting around the woman’s bedside, teasing the girl about her decision to go to the rival school. Suddenly, the patient sat up, looked at her great-granddaughter, and said: “Traitor.” She then closed her eyes and that was it.
My parents didn't let this secret out, but my uncle did. He told me how both of my parents were titanic stoners. They pounded sobriety into me for close to 20 years, sometimes literally. Because of this, and to this day, I neither drink nor smoke anything. Not too much later, I found out that my dad still indulges on golf outings using a THC vape pen. He's in his mid-60s.
73. Supernatural Secret
About a month after my dad passed, a letter just appeared in the house and I read it. Was shocked to discover that it was from a woman who claimed she’d had a child with my dad. This was apparently before he got together with my mom. The letter was just her telling him that the girl wanted to know my dad and wanted him to go to her high school graduation. It had been sent years and years ago.
I couldn’t believe that I found it. It was just so random. So I asked my mom about it and she confirmed that he did in fact have another child and always felt guilty about not being in her life, but that her mother was really difficult and irrational and he didn’t feel like he could be around because of that. He did pay child support.
Not long after that, my dad’s sociopathic sister tried to tell us about this child in an attempt to shock and hurt us. Luckily, I now knew all about it so my aunt’s little evil plan backfired. I’ve always wondered if my deceased father somehow guided me to that letter, so it wouldn’t turn into a big shocking ordeal.
74. The Truth Comes Out
I had a friend who passed in a car accident at twenty years old and it was pretty devastating for the whole community. He was a great guy, but after he passed, a ton of stuff came to my attention about him. For instance, he had lied about his mother dying from terminal cancer. She was very much alive and hadn’t had terminal cancer.
He had also told me he was near genius IQ, and had chosen the pretty mediocre university we went to over the Ivy League because of scholarship money. He is still a great guy in my eyes, but it did teach me a lesson about gullibility.
75. No One Knows The Whole Story
My ex-girlfriend’s family is very troubled. She, her parents, and her younger brother all struggle with mental health issues and behavioral problems, but her baby sister, who was 12 years younger, was the shining star of the family—incredibly kind, well behaved, beautiful, and the only one to be successful at school.
In many ways, she was a symbol of hope for the family. She passed last year at the age of 19 from an large amount of unpermitted substances. The craziest part of it all was that it blindsided everybody. No one in the family had any idea whatsoever that she was drinking and using substances until her cause of passing was determined. Needless to say it was a terrible and shocking loss.
76. Do As I Say, Not As I Do
My parents raised me in a Southern Baptist Church and pushed the whole True Love Waits/abstinence thing on me when I was a teenager. This wasn’t a big deal, since I didn't date anyway and if I did, I didn't want to have unsafe relations and mess up my life with an unwanted pregnancy. Two decades later, mom admitted she and dad actually hadn't waited until marriage.
Not an earth-shattering revelation, but kind of funny in a way.
77. Stain Of Glory
When I was little—maybe five or six—my family stayed at my uncle’s house one night. My sister and I were snooping around and we found a framed t-shirt with a massive stain on it. We asked my uncle why he had a t-shirt framed with a stain on it, and were told it was from a milkshake. We were young enough to believe that.
When I was like 15, I was told that the stain was actually from when my uncle was on a date one night. A thief grabbed his date's handbag, so he ran after the guy. He did not know the thief had an accomplice who was hiding around a corner. The accomplice emerged and knifed my uncle in the neck. My uncle nearly lost his life that day but is thankfully still around and being very cool to this day.
78. Bad Dad, Great Doctor
I was surprised to find out that my horrible dad had saved so many lives and was actually a good human being. He was a surgeon for 20 years in one of the top hospitals in the country. However, the corruption was so widespread throughout the country that if you had a family member in the ER, you better have paid some kickback to the nurse and doctor if you wanted them to take care of your dying family member.
If you were poor and unable to pay, it was most likely that your family member would not survive. My dad, on another hand, hated corruption and would never accept it. He banned his team from receiving kickbacks as well. He tried to save anyone who came to his care. So, at his funeral, around 400 people came and said a final thank you to my dad.
One person who stood out the most to me was this one old man. He told us that when he got out of lock-up, he had no money and no family. When he went to the ER after getting into some serious accident, my dad went above and beyond to save his life, and tried to get the hospital to forgive his medical bill. Unfortunately, none of our siblings really had any good relationship with him when he was still alive.
79. She Was A Baby Mule
When I turned 18, I got a letter from a distant aunt and uncle wishing me a happy birthday. I hadn’t seen them since I was a baby, but there’s hundreds of pictures of them and me together when I was little. They used to babysit me a lot and take me on vacations with them. But then my mom told me something unbelievable.
Apparently, this uncle and aunt would use me to smuggle things. I guess they said it was super easy to smuggle just about anything with a baby. At one point, they literally hid substances in my diaper.
80. Investigation Leads To Secret
I was told my whole life that my dad’s life ended because of a car crash. When I was in middle school, I accidentally found some documents that said that he was inebriated when the accident happened. So after that, I hated him with a passion and to this day, I can't drink. No one in my family ever said anything against it.
Well, a couple of years later, I was in college and had to do an investigative report of my choosing. I decided to get to the bottom of whatever happened to my dad. So, without telling my family, I contacted friends, ex-teachers, and ex-coworkers and began putting the story together. My dad was a young and brilliant architect that began working for this dude with a huge company in my city.
Apparently, my dad was very capable and hardworking and was on very good terms with the boss. The boss wanted to make him a shareholder in the company, but apparently, this got in the way with some plans the boss’s son had. After a fight with his dad and a totaled car, the son got cut from all the proceedings of the company. And the most upsetting part? The son blamed my dad for it. Long story short, he got my dad done in.
After I started investigating the events of that night—a February 14 no less—I discovered a ton of inconsistencies. For example, my family never got to see the body. Also, the autopsy had already been done when they notified my grandparents, which is against the law in my country. But the worst inconsistency was about the passenger in my dad’s car.
The passenger was a friend of my father’s and it was he who called in the emergency after the crash. This same friend was supposedly at the party where my dad was said to have gotten so hammered. I found out that this friend couldn’t have been there—according to his wife he had a stomach bug that night and was bedridden.
Finally, I managed to track down one of the nurses that attended him, and what she told me changed everything. My father didn't lose his life in the crash: he had a slug wound in his head. The doctor knew, but was paid to keep his mouth shut. I finally confronted my mom and grandma about it since they were the only ones that knew the truth.
They never told my grandad and the reason they never told anyone was because this dude told my mom that if anybody ever found out, the child (yours truly) would be in trouble. So they never told anyone. I went to school with the daughter of this maniac, I still have pictures of her at my birthday parties.
81. Recorded History
My father passed after being extremely ill. He had a rough life since the government had liquidated the business he treasured and his friends took his money. His family was especially rude to him, taking his car money and trying to separate our family. For a month, he was abroad for treatment, and I was using his laptop. I found a word document that stood out to me.
When I clicked on it, I was surprised to find the story of how he met my mother, but it was addressed to my children. I was about 15 at this time and didn’t have any. Reading on, there were documents proving everything that happened and all the wrong people had done to him. I never told anyone about it since I was too young and didn't want them to be upset.
Soon after he passed, my mother found it. We intend to finish the word document and go after the people who wronged him in his life. May he rest in peace.
82. What A Meatball
I had a grandpa who was from Sicily, and he really prided himself on his cooking skills. He would make elaborate meals for us—from scratch—and they were really delicious. My whole family loved them. My personal favorite was his Italian meatballs. Years later, on his deathbed, he told us that his meatballs were actually frozen and from the grocery store.
83. Raised On The Ranch
An old, grumpy, and kind of mean cowboy I knew named T lived in a trailer with a little wife on this huge undeveloped/falling apart ranch for as long as I had known him. Before he passed, we had lost contact, but I got an invitation to come back to the ranch to put T to rest. I went to the funeral thinking I would be one of the few. Boy, was I in for a surprise...
Seriously, so many people were there. I was shocked since I had only known T as being a pretty solitary guy. I found out that he and his wife adopted and fostered troubled children from all over the country for decades. Everyone was telling incredible stories of how grateful they were that they had grown up on this ranch.
Everyone was crediting T or his wife with helping them in some way, from teaching them how to be a mechanic, to getting them into and sponsoring college, to teaching an adopted daughter how to cook and shoot. I mean, these were really incredible stories. I was shocked. I was, apparently, one of the last kids they unofficially fostered on the ranch.
I deeply credit who I am today as a result of T and his wife. The ranch was given to the YMCA to be turned into a sleep away kids camp for disabilities or low income kids in the summer, and to rehabilitate horses and convicts in the off seasons. They were just incredible. Never judge a book by its cover, you just never know.
84. Fake News
On his deathbed, while I was out of the room, my friend told my then-wife that I was having an affair with another woman. I wasn't. She did not mention this until he was in the ground. He was always a jokester. So this was a very committed joke or it was the brain cancer talking, or it was that crazy guy just jerking my chain. I never will find out.
85. A Deeply Disappointing Find
When cleaning out my great aunt's house, we found a ton of her handwritten journals. She was always very sweet and giving. She was also a bit opinionated, but always pretty nice about it. When going through one of her journals, I learned a lot about her that I never knew. Quite a bit of what I discovered disappointed me. I had no idea she was extremely prejudiced.
My brother is half black and she wrote about how every time was around him, she couldn't stand it. When going to the grocery store, she always complained about different races. Everything is this race's fault or that race's fault. She always seemed so sweet and caring. It's been hard to accept that she was actually very hateful and bitter.
86. Living A Double Life
My aunt showed up at her longtime lover and father of her two kids' funeral...just to meet his wife and six legitimate kids. She had no idea. He led a really well kept double life and it all fell apart. His wife hates my aunt, although strangely his youngest kid with his wife, who is three days older than my aunt's older kid, gets along really well with my aunt and is currently living with her.
The kid is studying at a college in my aunt's town and his roommates did him dirty, didn't pay rent and he was evicted. My aunt told him he could stay until he found a new place. Eventually, they agreed he could just pay her rent and stay until whenever because he likes how quiet her place is for studying and she likes that her kids are getting to know at least one of their half siblings.
87. Hide And Seek
My dad and his cousin cleaned out the house that belonged to their aunt and uncle. They never had children of their own but loved all of their nieces and nephews and their kids. They were the sweetest people who lived full lives. My dad found a cardboard box hidden in the rafters above the garage while he was cleaning. What he found in there shocked him to his core.
Apparently, my great uncle had a second family with two sons that nobody ever knew about. We read the letters from his other woman begging him to leave my great aunt, lots of school pictures, and some other tokens. We don't know if my great aunt ever knew about it or not. My great uncle was always a little flirtatious with women, but nobody ever expected this.
He flirted the most with his wife and loved her more than anything. I thought stuff like this only happened in the movies!
88. Not Enough Degrees Of Separation
Right before he kicked the bucket, my great uncle actually confessed—right in front of his own children and grandchildren—to having two illegitimate sons. The crazy thing was that none of his children knew this life of his. Not even my great aunt knew about it because she would have made a huge fuss if she was alive at that time and knew about it.
What was crazier was that these two sons already gone—five and seven years ahead of him respectively. He was 98 years old and his “invisible” sons were 65 and 69 years old. The children found out that one of his invisible sons actually was a teacher at a school that his granddaughters attended when they were in high school.
Nevertheless, his children decided to reach out to the children of his invisible sons. They got connected and learned more stuff about my grand uncle. It worked out—but to me, there was one truly disturbing element. I realized that I had actually dated one of the granddaughters of one of the invisible sons (the one who passed on at the age of 69 years old). Talking about a few degrees of separation!
89. Mind Sufficiently Blown
Maybe a cliché, I don’t know, but my grandmother lost her life last Friday. While cleaning out her stuff, we found a notebook that had a one-page letter to my mom. It was sweet, saying how much she loved her and then out of nowhere it said, “Your uncle Bobby is your real dad.” Given that my mom is 53, our minds were sufficiently blown. Like, what a plot twist.
90. Blessing in Disguise
My grandma confessed to my mom when she thought she was dying that she tried to coat hanger abort her. Obviously it was unsuccessful. My grandma was a religious woman, and decided that God wanted her to have this baby, and treated my mom like her favorite child. This messed my mom up for a while, and that wasn't even the worst part. It got 10 times more awkward when my grandma surprisingly got better.
After Grandma expired for real, my mom eventually made peace with it. After she was born, Grandma never treated her like she was unwanted, so mom understood she was in a vulnerable place at the time.
91. Dad Checks Up On Daughter
When I was 20 years old my brother let me know that I was adopted. Everyone in the family—I'm the youngest of five—knew and kept it a secret. It turns out my mom and birth mom are distant cousins. My birth dad was in a biker gang and he and my mom both had addiction problems and had absolutely no clue how to care for a baby.
After I found this out, I saw some pictures of my birth dad, I was shocked. Turns out I recognized him. He was a regular in the restaurant I worked at the year before I found out about being adopted. He was always very kind to me and told me he knew some of my distant family but left it at that. It turns out he wasn’t there for the food, he just wanted to see who his daughter was and know that I was turning out ok.
92. Dogging Our Steps
My dad wanted to take us outside of the Scottsdale, AZ, city limits to see Halley's comet. We drove about 45 minutes north of town into deep desert. We spent some time viewing it. We had heard dogs barking in the distance when we first got there. But they seemed closer now. Then closer. It was pitch black. I think we had a flashlight but that was it.
We started heading back to the car, shone the flashlight at a fence in the distance and about five terrifying looking dogs started right at us. We literally got the doors to the car shut just as drooling, snarling, dogs started jumping up to the windows and getting in the bed of the truck. We peeled out, and dad said, “Don’t tell mom about the dogs, ok? Your mom's brother was almost eaten by dogs when he was little.”
93. To The Bitter End
My parents had a very difficult marriage. They married in the 50s, and my mom was mostly Catholic so divorce, while often discussed, was never actually accomplished. They fought, sometimes physically, and he was often and very publicly unfaithful to her. After they both passed, I was sorting through some of her things.
I found this fancy Mother's Day card, which my father had given her. He even wrote a short affectionate message, which was very unlike him. It was dated when I, their only child, was two. My father had actually worked for a greeting card company, so it was elaborate with its own little box. Then I looked underneath it, and my heart broke for my mother.
There was a letter dated around the same time. It had been read and reread so many times, folded and refolded so many times, that it was literally falling apart, and I almost couldn't decipher it. It was from a would-be lover of my mother's deep in discussions of how she could leave my father just begging her to do it.
I put it back where my mother hid it. I had a lot of thoughts about it, but I knew it was probably a rewarding jolt that my mother got from hiding a love letter behind one of my father's bombastic and totally foolish attempts to hide what a jerk he was.
94. You’ve Got A Friend In Me
My mother has always wondered why I didn't have too many friends back in high school. The real reason is a secret that I would never want her to know about. It is because, growing up, my family was always broke and I knew that she was struggling financially. So, in order to avoid anyone seeing how we lived, I always refused anytime people from school wanted to do things with me or have get-togethers at my house.
To make matters even worse, I decided during my senior year that I did not want to burden my mother by asking for money when I needed to buy things. As a result, I started working as much as I could outside of school. This gave me even less time to make friends. I would never want my mother to find out about this, and I would never want her to feel guilty or blame herself for my lack of social life as a child.
95. A Family Photo Album To Remember
My good friend in high school’s parents were discussing putting in an alarm on their house once while I was over, but were balking at the price. I told them I would cable it for them, which made they very excited. The attic access was in the master bedroom closet so I had to go through there. And their closet had some skeletons.
When I went up into the attic, I found a bunch of pictures of my friend’s mom with a guy who was not her husband. I mean a bunch of pictures—and she was doing it all with this dude. My friend’s dad was permanently disabled and didn’t have great use of one side, so I’m guessing that’s why she thought that was a safe place to hide her dirty secret.
I never said anything to their family about it.
96. If Not Now, When?
This was a weird one for me and actually apropos for my current life. I still think about her. This happened maybe six or seven years ago. She was an older female in her 70s with a history of chest cancer. At that point, she was in the ICU for sepsis, I believe. I talked to her and she mentioned she was widowed. I gave my condolences and stated “That’s hard, I’m sorry about your loss. I imagine you miss him.” Her response shocked me.
To my surprise, she told me, “No, actually I don’t. I was relieved when he went. I was never happy with him. I didn’t leave him because that’s not what we did back in the day. So here I spent many years with a man who didn’t treat me well, and now I have cancer.” Oof. Life lesson folks.
97. Fly Me to the Moon
Just got on a flight in London headed to Vegas. Sitting next to my GF, and she wants to show me something she has planned for the trip, so gets out her phone. It opens to the Messages and shows a chat with a guy (I know him) saying how much she is going to miss him and how she doesn't want to go away with me anyway. The doors close on the plane and that was a really fun 10-11hrs...
98. His Phone Confessed For Him
My husband had a cardiac event that required an ambulance. As the ambulance was arriving I asked him if the code to open his phone was XXXX, he said yes, then looked up at me and said, "I am so sorry." He had successful surgery, but had several strokes on the operating table and was taken off life support after seven days. That’s when I learned his dark secret.
When I opened his phone I found out he was having an affair. The same code to his phone also opened his laptop where I found telephone recordings of him and his girlfriend, as well as screenshots of their chats. I don't know how interesting this is, but it was certainly devastating to me.
99. This One Will Make You Sick...
When a "good" friend of mine who I worked under had cancer and wasn't able to pay some bills, I loaned her $200 just to help. I was only 18 years old at the time and I felt bad because she had kids. It was right around the holidays and I just wanted to help however I could and be a good person in life. She promised to pay me back when she could.
Turns out she lied about having cancer, was embezzling money from the company I worked at, scammed my other coworkers, and would come in after skipping work for her “chemo” to make fraudulent returns while I was overseeing the store by myself because of her absence. I eventually got her fired and got promoted to her position.
100. No Show
My wife's grandmother, who raised her, believed that when you are about to pass your unalive relatives show up to accompany you to heaven. She was by all accounts a horrible person. On her deathbed her last words were, in a quiet terrified voice, "They're not coming."
101. A “Shameful” Family Secret
My great-grandmother hated me. I was an "illegitimate" child, and my parents split when I was three. When my dad got his girlfriend pregnant, my great-grandmother said that she would cut him out of her life if "He didn't marry this one." My father married my stepmother, who was a single mother, and my great-grandmother was fantastic to my step-brother and my sister, but not me.
She flat-out refused to have anything to do with me. I spent Christmas with the family, but I came home crying to my mum, asking why Grandma wouldn't talk to me. For the entire four days I was there, she ignored me, while cuddling my brother and sister as much as she could, because they lived in another country by then.
I didn't find out any of this until after she passed. I wasn't included in her will—the only grandchild not included out of about 7 grandchildren, and many more great-grandchildren. My dad took some of his inheritance and passed it on to me, along with a few heirlooms, keeping up the pretense that she didn't hate me up into my 30s.
I was so hated by her that I'm only just starting to meet family members, who had no idea I existed. My dad, siblings, and nana were forbidden to speak about me to other family members, so the few who met me when I was a baby had forgotten I existed. I’m 36 now… It’s a long time to be keeping me a secret from the rest of the family.
My sister only told me all of this a few years ago, though she'd known my great-grandmother hated me from when we were kids because she would speak very hatefully about me behind my back. My nana's partner confirmed it a couple months ago, with my mum finally telling me about it the last Christmas I ever saw her.