Family Horror Stories: Parents, Children, and Siblings Share Their Most Disturbing Experiences
You can pick your friends and you can pick your nose, but you can’t pick your family! Many of us wouldn’t trade our families for the world, because even when they can be a little much, they’re family after all! But for some people, their family’s nightmarish behavior is just too much to bear. If nothing else, these wild stories from all over the internet will make you realize that maybe your clan isn’t so bad after all!
Don’t forget to check the comment section below the article for more interesting stories!
#1 Something to be Thankful For
For some inexplicable reason, my mom decided that it would be a good idea to casually tell everybody at Thanksgiving dinner at her boyfriend’s house about my tween bouts with anorexia. I didn’t want to be there in the first place, and she just kept going on and on about how I used to just eat carrots for dinner for a year. It got so bad that I eventually had to shout at her to get her to stop.
#2 Taking Messed up to New Levels
My cousin ended his brother and father… he got up one morning, had a glass of milk, I guess it was sour because he said they were trying to poison him. He shot my uncle in his bed, and then went after Robert… when police arrived, he tried to say that Robert had ended his father and that he took the gun away from him and ended him in self-defense… however, the only place on the gun they could find Robert’s prints were on the end of the gun barrel, like he had tried to push it away…
He is currently doing life without parole in the Oklahoma Prison system.
#3 Not Cool
I had a music teacher who took his 4-year-old daughter to an old theater in Alaska. She started crying immediately when she walked in, so he took her outside and she stopped crying. He took her back in, she started crying again, so he took her outside again. He asked why she was crying, and she said: “That’s where the people with no eyes watch you.”
#4 Spit It Out
I had just come back from playing soccer (I was 12 years old) and was severely thirsty. I saw a glass of what I thought was sweet tea on the kitchen counter and immediately tried to gulp it down. It turned out to be my father’s glass of dip spit. For those that do not know, that is the spit that people who chew tobacco make as a byproduct of the process. I threw up all over the kitchen counter and floor and they found me there a few minutes later dry heaving in the fetal position. I’ve never been able to even smell Copenhagen without gagging to this day and I am 26.
#5 A Hunka Hunka Burning Love
While suffering from postpartum depression, my mother set me on fire when I was 26 days old. We don’t have a relationship but that’s from the rest of my childhood, not this.
#6 Love Waits for No One
My mother-in-law died one September after knowing she had cancer for less than a year. My parents invited her widower husband to have Thanksgiving with us. He spent much of the time giddily talking about dating apps. My husband was not amused.
#7 Moving Away
I met my daughter’s father online at 14 years old, moved 1,000 miles away from my parents and in with him when I was in the 11th grade. Got myself emancipated and finished high school. She will know NONE of this for a very long time.
#8 Little Brother Sick
When my cousin was two, her mom got pregnant again. One day she went to hug her mom’s belly and said, “Little brother sick.” A few days later she had a miscarriage.
#9 A Little Too Much Information
My 13-year-old practically advertises that he’s “going to the bathroom,” but he doesn’t go in there to go number one or number two. I always make him wash his hands when he’s done.
#10 You’d Think the Stealing Part Was Bad Enough…
My brother threatened to kick in my front door and hurt me (six months pregnant), my husband and two-year-old son. He had stolen the phone I had purchased for my dad and I turned it off. He wanted me to turn it back on.
#11 Trouble on the Telephone?
One day at work, I was in the middle of an important meeting with a client in my office and I had not been checking my cell phone during this time. All of a sudden, my boss walks in to interrupt my meeting and hands me a cordless office phone, telling me that my mother is on the line. As it turns out, my mom had Googled my boss’ phone number, called him up on his office phone, and asked him if he could please put me on the phone.
Now, you’d think that all of that excessive hassle was for something important, right? Nope! She just wanted to whine about my step-father and was in the mood to talk at that particular time. No emergency or anything whatsoever. She just wanted to chat and had zero concern for the consequences of her actions, as per usual, unfortunately.
And so, that was the day that my boss and pretty much all of my coworkers throughout the entire company lost all respect for me. When the mom of one of their coworkers calls him on the boss’ phone just to talk about personal nonsense, there’s pretty much no way of recovering. A few months later, I resigned. There was nowhere to go in that place anymore…
#12 The Cursed Child
When my father was a kid in the ‘60s, he would go into the living room in the middle of the night, turn the TV on to static, climb on his rocking horse and slowly rock back and forth in the dark room only lit by the TV static and slowly say “I hate mommy. I hate mommy. I hate mommy.” over and over again. My grandmother says it was the creepiest thing she’s ever seen. Well, that and the UFO.
#13 It Takes One to Tango
As a teenager, after watching a cop show about a kidnapping, I got really curious about what it would be like to be tied up. With some flexibility and creativity, I managed to get myself gagged and pretty securely bound to a kitchen chair. I could still get loose but not without some wiggling. My mom came home early, and I couldn’t get loose in time. She FREAKED, thinking I had been robbed. Then, when she untied me, I explained, she thought I was a freak. Haha.
#14 For Therapist Ears Only
We just don’t talk about that New Year’s Eve when my mom tried to hurt hurself. For years, everyone has acted like it didn’t happen. She doesn’t want to talk about it. Both she and I saw therapists for it.
#15 Caught Something on the Way Here
My aunt decided to announce she got an embarrassing disease as we started to eat and my grandmother told her getting stuffed by random people is “for turkeys.” I laughed really hard.
#16 Learning About Mary
My uncle recently told me that when my mother would ask him to babysit my brother and I while her and my dad went on vacations, she would often call him up while he was at our house and ask him to water the “wacky” plants she was growing. To clarify how hilarious this image is to me… I grew up in a very loving, rule-abiding, middle class, extremely normal home. The horrified look on his face when he realized that we didn’t already know this about her was funnier than finding out my mom grew illegal herbs while we were young.
#17 Skin and Bones
Once, when my toddler was hugging me, he quietly said: “I promise I won’t eat your bones.” Oh, uh… much obliged!”
#18 Dirty Little Secret
My kid poops in his pants on purpose. I know this because he laughs maniacally when I’m not looking.
#19 The Proof Is in the Poop
I have an aggressive case of Crohn’s disease that started showing up around the time I was in 8th grade. My mom took me to all of my doctor’s appointments, which were all pretty embarrassing because, as you can surely imagine, no teenage boy in the world wants their mom involved in any of their butt related illnesses.
On one particular visit, we were about half of the way through our appointment when she whipped out a Cool Whip tub. As it turned out, I had used the bathroom the previous night and it apparently didn’t all go down properly. My mom, without my knowledge, happened to have discovered the remaining sample I had left in the toilet, so she thought it would be a good idea to load that thing up in our poor people tupperware and haul it on into the doctor’s office so that he could look it over.
He had the confused “What am I supposed to do with poop in a Cool Whip tub?” face going for a good five to ten seconds, and then he politely dismissed the offer. Who would have thought that there isn’t any medical knowledge to be gained from fishing old poop out of the toilet, refrigerating it overnight, and schlepping it up to an office for a visit.
#20 An Unhealthy Rivalry
There’s my grandmother who divorced my grandfather and married his brother, making her my great aunt. There’s the other grandmother who showed up to my grandfather’s funeral tipsy, dressed like a $2 prostitute, cussed out the family, and nearly knocked the casket over.
#21 First Time is the Worst Time
In high school, I was on the verge of losing my virginity to my girlfriend of two years who also happened to be my neighbor. The scene was set perfectly, both my parents were gone (dad was out of town and mom was working until nine) and I had just asked her to prom that day… So things are getting hot and heavy, and all the sudden I hear a noise downstairs, but assume it’s one of my cats wreaking havoc as usual.
Things continue and about a minute later my (extremely conservative) mom walks in, and as the door opens she lets out a faint scream and runs downstairs. BUSTED. Now while this moment was awful enough, after going downstairs to face my mother who had immediately called my (also very conservative) dad, she goes on a rant about how irresponsible I am and how protection doesn’t always work, and I’m proof of that. So that’s the story of how my relationship was ruined (just got really awkward after that) and I found out I was an accident. Maybe the act itself isn’t anywhere near as embarrassing as some of the ones on here, but I swear the situation made it mortifying.
#22 Priest Life
My grandfather’s brother was a priest when he was younger. His wife of 40+ years used to be a nun. Their first child was born a few months after they left.
#23 Something Wicked This Way Comes (to Dinner)
My uncle brought a woman other than his wife to Christmas dinner. She was crazy. A practicing witch who would “divine” things about us on the spot and ironically accused my other uncle of having an affair. She got tipsyand groped me in the coat closet, then tried to kiss me saying, “If only I were young again.” I was 16.
#24 The Good Ol’ Days
Not me but my dad once told me that when he was growing up in Pakistan, he was a big fan of Mao. Took Mao’s Little Red Book everywhere.
In a separate story, he and his brothers—there were seven of them I think—beat up the neighborhood bully. Not with their fists, but with home-made whips made of long, thin leaves they wound together to make them stronger. Most of them grew up to be engineers too. The best part of the story: “I can still hear his screams,” followed by nostalgic laughter when he recounts this story 40+ years later.
#25 The Party is Just Getting Started
My little nephew went through this phase of being absolutely terrified of going to sleep in his room. I babysat a couple of times during this phase—we basically had to sit beside his bed and help him fall asleep, and he’d usually wake up shortly after you left the room and start crying. His reason? “The big dark scary man standing in the corner with red eyes doesn’t want me to sleep.”
#26 Do I Need to Draw You a Picture to Explain This One?
While changing the sheets in my then ten-year-old (he’s now 12) son’s bed, when I pulled off the fitted sheet a folded up piece of paper fell out, I picked it up and unfolded it. Drawings of boobs. Just boobs. Big ones. Small ones. Giant ones, all with little dot nipples, I chuckle and tuck it back in. Then my hand feels more folded papers.
I pull one out, expecting to find more boobies, nope, they were dicks. I laugh and put it back with the rest and continue on about my day. He gets home from school and talks about his day and school life. I ask what he did in free period, and he says “Nothing, just drew and played games with my friends.” I tell him I changed and washed his sheets.
He stops what he’s doing. Looks at me to see if I’m going to say or mention anything about his artwork. When I say nothing more, smiles and says “Thanks, Mom.” All the while he’s going through his backpack’s outside pocket, he pulls out three folded pieces of paper and shoves them into his pant pockets. Says he going to go change and takes off to his room.
#27 Not-So Secret Santa
My mum has done plenty of embarrassing things over the years, however the thing that immediately jumps out at me the most would have to be what happened to my sister. She had been dating this guy for a year or two on and off. Now, normally his ethnic background would not be important, but for this particular story it is. He’s Black and my family is English, so we’re all pretty much paper white. This was all back when my sister and I were in high school many years ago.
It was Christmas, so he and some family friends were invited over and everything was going great until it the time came for opening gifts. My mum, who thinks she’s hilarious, decided to give my sister (who was still a virgin at the time) a deck of cards filled with “positions to try.” Remember, this was also in front of our close family friends, not just the boyfriend himself.
She was already mortified by that alone, but the worst was still yet to come. Her boyfriend opens up his gift and it has a little card in it, along with a box of glow in the dark condoms. Mum: “Do you like the present? It’s so that she can find you in the dark!” Everyone: …Laughs nervously, while secretly wondering what on earth just happened…
#28 Lying About Vietnam
Dad did not go to ‘Nam despite what he tells all of my sister’s boyfriends..
#29 The Silence of the Bunnies
My oldest daughter occasionally sleepwalks. A few weeks ago, she came out of her room and entered the living room where me and the wife were watching TV. I asked her what was wrong and all she said was “The rabbits won’t stop screaming.” Then she turned around and went back to her room. Not gonna lie, it creeped us out…
#30 Good Art Comes From Inside
When I was six years old my mother used to babysit my neighbor Annie. Annie was a very artistic girl; she loved to color and draw everything she saw. One day, I was playing Star Fox 64 on my Nintendo 64 and Annie was watching. Of course, being too absorbed in the game, I never turned around to see her greatest work of art.
My mom walks in the room to check on us and does a gasp to end all gasps…Annie had made a drawing of a triangular looking ship with a circle around it. It was Star Fox doing a barrel roll…except she made it with a load of diarrhea she scooped out of her pants.
#31 The Slip-Up
Apparently, our dad had another kid about eight years older than me. My mom blurted something out about it after their divorce when she was pissed about something. It was along the lines of, “if he thinks he can forget you exist like that other kid of his…” She then turned very white and I was never able to get more out of her than that. My dad pretends he doesn’t know what I’m talking about but has apparently told my brother a bit of the story and then backtracked and never talked about it again. So yeah, apparently I’m not the oldest.
#32 Grandma Taking Death Drops Too Far
My mother and grandmother had plans to go to a restaurant last year, but my sister convinced them to go somewhere else at the last minute. Of course, this means they had no reservations, but my sister is convinced that it’ll be fine and they might just have to wait a few minutes for a table. I live in another state, so I get to experience all of this from a distance.
They end up sitting at the bar while waiting for a table, having a few drinks and appetizers. After the second round of martinis my mother looks over and my grandmother is leaning back in her chair, completely limp and unresponsive. Everyone freaks out, paramedics are called, grandma is rushed to the ER.
I’m 1,200 miles away when my mother calls to tell me what happened. At this point, grandma is at the ER, still unresponsive, with crazy low blood pressure and high heart rate. I’m ready to book plane tickets and rush to the airport when my mom calls back and says: “Don’t worry, everything’s OK, your grandmother just got tipsy.”
Her blood test came back completely normal except for a BAC of 0.24 (3x the legal limit). She was awake now, so I got to talk to her and she was crying “I’m so sorry, I’ve ruined Thanksgiving.” I assured her that she hasn’t ruined Thanksgiving and that everyone is just happy she’s OK.
So my grandma is 90 years old, about 4’8″ tall, and 100lbs. She hadn’t eaten anything all day because she knew they were having a big dinner. She also ordered another martini while no one was looking, so the second martini was actually her third. This turned into the perfect storm of a really tipsygrandma. In other words, Grandma got run over by a martini.
#33 Dad’s Tragedy
Here’s a story that my dad never told me but my uncle shared after my dad passed. He was madly in love with a girl when he was 17 years old. They were soul mates, lovers meant to be, engaged to be married and grow old together… all that sweet jazz. They went to the county fair one year and decided to ride the Ferris Wheel. About the time they got to the top and started heading back down the safety bar came unhooked and swung open. My dad grabbed her and held onto the seat. He tried to hold her but he couldn’t. She fell to her death.
My dad never mentioned it, never said a word to anyone, even to my mom. My uncle said her death broke his heart and he was never the same again, until after I was born. He would never let me go to fairs, amusement parks, or any place with rides when I was growing up and we used to get into big fights about it when all my friends were going. He always told me it was just because they were dangerous and didn’t want me to get hurt.
#34 I’m Scared to Ask What He Thinks Will Happen to Me…
A few weeks ago, I was getting breakfast ready for my three-year-old when he nonchalantly told me his Grandma fell down the stairs. About an hour later, Grandpa calls us to tell us Grandma had fallen down the stairs. Also last weekend, he said my sister was going to visit the next day. Guess who showed up the next day for a “surprise” visit…
#35 Don’t Trash These Stories
Oh god. Back in the day (2005) I was 14 and I would print out my erotic Harry Potter fan fiction to read at night, as we didn’t have portable devices like smartphones back then. I always threw them away after. One day my mom gave me a gigantic see-through bag for trash and that night I read some of the good stuff and then put it in there.
There was probably like 15 pages of printed out smut. While I was at school she rooted through my trash. She confronted me when I came home like “Why are Fred and George getting intimate with Hermione? What are these stories?? Where do you get them? Are they all like this??” So so bad. I think I died and I’ve been a ghost for the last 13 years.
#36 Don’t Skirt Around the Real Issue Here…
My mom once pulled up my skirt, causing me to involuntarily flash a room full of people, at a family Christmas dinner. I was absolutely mortified. She wanted to check for any potential self-harm scars on my thighs, apparently. I’ve never physically harmed myself before in my entire life. I was 18 years old at the time, and thankfully I was wearing underwear so it was not as bad as it could have been. Nevertheless, she should not be allowed to consume alcohol ever again…
#37 Making the Headlines
My uncle is Cecil Russell. A lot of what he’s done is public, but he’s done so many more terrible things. The two big ones are that when he was still just my aunt’s swimming coach (when she was a teenager, mind you) he got her pregnant and destroyed her shot at the Olympics. He also participated in the murder of a man over steroids (something he continues to sell to this day), but was only ever charged with hiding the body.
#38 The Sky’s the Limit
I have twin daughters. One day while playing outside, one looked up at the sky and said, “The sky is cracked, and it’s on fire!” My other daughter looked up and said, “Yes, the people are screaming!” Then they went back to playing with dolls. Fingers crossed they’re not predicting the future, everybody!
#39 Caught in a Compromising Position
My Dad walked in on me squatting over the business end of a hairdryer. I’d not long got out the shower and wanted to blast my gooch with warms. So there I was, naked, with my back to my bedroom door, hovering over the hairdryer. I didn’t hear Dad walk in due to the hairdryer. He just yelled “BUSTED!” and walked out.
#40 Ignoring the Eating Disorder
My family never talks about my sister’s eating disorder. She eats a ton and goes on to vomit. She goes jogging for one hour or more per day (every day, no breaks even though her knees hurt like crazy) and refuses to eat any carbs, fruits and vegetables only. I seem to be the only one who realizes the magnitude of this.
I seem to be the only one who thinks of this as a sickness, not as a “temporary phase.” It’s been like this for three years already, and I have no idea when my parents noticed. Whenever I say something I get “shushed” at and later have to justify my “insensitive behavior” in front of my parents. So I just kind of gave up on arguing. Not sure what I can do to change things without disrupting the family.
#41 This Dog’s Got Great Comedic Timing
One Thanksgiving, my grandmother ran out of counter space and stuff was sorta burning like crazy on top of the stove. She took out the turkey on the tray, looked around, and put it on the ground for like three seconds. She intended for it to be there for three seconds. Her dog, Rosco, had been following her all day. Earlier she tossed him a turkey giblet, and I guess that didn’t sit well with him. He defecated all over my grandma’s leg, floor, and freshly-cooked turkey in one explosive two-second blast of fiery diarrhea.
#42 Truth About Their Parents
My adopted kids came from a couple of addicts. Even though they all remember their birth mom and dad fondly, they have no idea how horrible they really were and how much they put the kids’ lives in danger. I’m not sure if I can ever tell them that.
#43 Brotherly Love
My three-year-old daughter stood next to her newborn brother, looked at him for a while, then turned to me and said, “Daddy, it’s a monster! We should bury it.”
#44 YouTube Brings Out the Animal in Her
That when my daughter was five or six years old, she would look up videos of dogs throwing up or stallions urinating, based on her YouTube history. I never directly spoke to her about this but have always told her that she can always talk to me about any questions she had about any subject with no judgment from me. She’s 14 now and I still haven’t said a word.
#45 Bad Dads 2
My dad, influenced at least in part by the movie Bad Boys II, decided to mess with my boyfriend on my first date by acting like a tough guy. He filled a whiskey bottle with tea and, when he answered the door, he started chugging down the whole thing while scanning my boyfriend up and down. He then tried to break the bottle over his own head. The date was canceled due to the ensuing hospital trip, and I became known as the girl with a totally insane father. “Don’t concuss yourself this time, Dad!” became the running joke in my house once I was able to get a date again.
#46 I’ll Get Around to It One of These Days
My grandmother said she needed a place to stay one night due to issues with her housemate. She slept on the couch… For the next ten years. Made no effort to get her own place despite having a very good retirement income and still working part-time as a nurse. Loved to hit the casino though…
#47 Evil Laugh
It’s one in the morning. I’m fast asleep with my wife in the living room reading. All of the sudden, the baby monitor is blaring my 16-month-old son’s laughter into my ear. So I jump up, run into his room, and he’s standing in his crib pointing at the corner of the room and giggling hysterically. I just stared at him for a few seconds before I grabbed him and put him in bed with me.
#48 Cheesy Tunes
About a year ago, my parents caught me singing to my microwave while I was waiting for it to warm up a piece of pizza. This all happened at 4 in the morning, when I thought my parents were staying at a friend’s. Oh, I almost forgot that I was naked.
#49 Doing the Right Thing
My grandfather (on my dad’s side) was the only one to accept my oldest brother when he came into the picture. My dad married my mom when my brother was three, long before I came along, and everyone looked at him like he was a nobody and told my dad that my mother was a loose woman.
#50 The War at Home
My uncle and grandfather don’t have a good relationship but were tolerating each other because it was Thanksgiving. My uncle was cooking lasagna and my grandfather decided to help, so he grated the cheese. He did this in another room, because the kitchen was full of other people cooking, we have a big Thanksgiving with maybe 15 or 20 who love to eat.
I had brought in the cheese and everything was going fine. Flashforward to dinner time, the food is coming out and, as tradition dictates, we always start with lasagna. My grandfather made some joke like,” I know you hate me, but at least I’m grate,” and stuff hit the fan.
My uncle literally went into a rage and was yelling at everyone because we didn’t tell him he was using “tainted” cheese. Then said “f*** it” and proceeded to flip the table ALL the food was on. Then my grandfather called him outside to settle the score, which resulted in two grown men fist fighting in the backyard, culminating with my grandad getting thrown into the pond we lived off of, and slicing his leg on a jagged rock that he landed on. The rest of us ordered Chinese food and kicked my uncle out. My grandfather refused the hospital because he had a little too much “holiday joy” in him at the time. Surprising my uncle hasn’t come to holidays in years now…
#51 Next Time Stick to Sesame Street
Me when I was a kid: “Mommy, look what I learned!” *Inserts tongue into mom’s mouth during goodnight kiss.* “I learned it from a movie! It means you love someone!” Mom calmly gets up without saying a word and walks to her room. I still cringe pretty damn hard whenever I remember doing that.
#52 Don’t Do Illicit Substances, Parents
When I was 11 years old, I was taken in by the police for questioning regarding illicit substances distribution that had been taking place out of our family’s house. My dad had marijuana growing in the basement, and he had been using it as well as selling it frequently to neighbors and friends. When the police raided the house while my dad was at work, they asked me if I knew anything about what was in the room.
Since I admitted to having had knowledge of it, I guess that that was all it took for them to feel the need to bring me in for questioning. They even cuffed me and everything. My dad didn’t show up at the police station till almost eight hours later. As you can imagine, in a small town like the one where I grew up, people talked. A lot. It also didn’t help that I lived next to a massive apartment complex where everyone could see what was happening the entire time as it was unfolding. I was the talk of the town for almost two years because of this incident.
#53 A Very Bad Idea
My girlfriend’s cousin molested his own sister when he was 18 and she was around 8. He went to jail for a year or so and now has to register as an offender. His mother makes her daughter hang out with him. Seriously, the woman makes her daughter hang out with the man who molested her because “they’re a family.” What the freaking heck.
As a victim of abuse when I was younger, I understand what this girl is going through whenever she’s around him. My phone isn’t working right now so I contacted my local state police by email and gave them all the details. I hope they follow through.
#54 A Bird’s Eye View of the Action
When I was 41, I went to visit my parents and had to take a dump. For some reason, when I sat on the familiar, family throne, I had the urge to jack it like a teenager. I heard a sound above and just briefly caught a glimpse of my 70+ dad’s face disappearing from the skylight he was re-sealing.
#55 An Enterprising Man
I had a cousin who was addicted to heroin and his parents were always doing stuff to bail him out and keep him from being homeless. One time they put down a deposit and paid rent for a furnished apartment for him. He ended up selling the furniture to get money for illicit substances. Another time they rented a mobile home for him and couldn’t figure out why the water bill was so high. Turns out he was charging his homeless friends $1 to take a bath or shower and that was going on pretty much around the clock.
#56 A Blessing from Above
When I was probably seven years old me and my brother would be hanging out upstairs in our room. But there was only one bathroom in the house and it was downstairs and all the way on the other side of the house. Our solution: pee in bottles and throw them out the window. Little did we know we threw them out the window to the backyard where my entire extended family was…
#57 Alzheimer Difficulties
My grandfather remarried a woman who almost immediately developed Alzheimer’s and forgot who he is. He is now dating his first wife, while his actual wife is confused who anyone is. He refuses to divorce because the terrible family of his second wife bailed when they saw how expensive she was going to be, and my family had to get her care because she was too much for my grandfather to take care of (he is almost 90). I called out the relevant members of her family for bailing and was told I was being rude, which might be true, but I’m also darn right.
#58 Not All Things Should Be Crispy
My dad and uncle tried frying a turkey, very tipsily. Then they forgot about it. The oil went up in flames and so did the side of my uncle’s house.
#59 A Little Help From a Photographic Memory
My parents always knew when my siblings would sneak out and we could never figure out how they knew. One time my brother was an idiot and got caught sneaking out of a window from our basement. It was winter. They left footprints. Every sleepover we had my mom would take a picture of everyone’s shoes that night before bed. If they had changed overnight, she knew they snuck out! She would only tell us once we’d all moved out.
#60 The Dirty Laundry
I had my first boyfriend in middle school and brought him home one time. At one point, my mom made him bring me my clean laundry—and by that I mean a single pair of pink High School Musical underwear. I cried from embarrassment, but he was actually pretty cool about it and comforted me.
#61 Thanks for Sticking Your Nose in, Sis
My sister lied to a social worker to have us investigated for child abuse and neglect, leading to our foster child being removed from our home even though the claims were found to be false. She also spread the gossip that we were being investigated which hurt some friendships.
That foster child she got removed? Not only did she mess up that baby’s life, she also destroyed my other kids because one day their sibling was home and the next gone with no warning. We had prepared them for foster kids leaving but this foster child was within weeks of being adopted by us. To this day my sister maintains that she did the right thing because we “didn’t need more kids.”
#62 You’re Scaring Me!
When my son was about 5 years old, he started having night terrors. Eyes wide open, he would stare into an abyss of his own invention and scream with the chilling ferocity of hell itself. I would hold him and rock his rigid little body until he loosened back to sweaty deep sleep. What I never told my husband or the pediatrician, or even my mother, was that I was afraid of him during those nighttime bouts of what looked and felt like nothing less than possession. I was afraid of my own sweet child and wanted to run away.
#63 Which is Worse?
Last week, I was in my room watching My Little Pony for about two hours when my parents ran in thinking that I was having a dirty movie marathon. When they saw my screen, they just started laughing and told all their friends.
#64 Dad’s History
My family just flat out doesn’t acknowledge that our father lied to our family about everything: where he grew up, lived, military background, other family, jobs. We found out after he died and never spoke of it again. It’s been ten years since he died.
#65 I Sense Tension from All Sorts of Places
My dog ate the whole entire turkey and my grandma farted on a stool, causing it to break. Also, my stoner cousin got in a huge fight with my lawyer sister. All in one Thanksgiving. It was magical.
#66 Showing Up Empty Handed
I can name lots and lots of things that my parents did to embarrass me as a kid. I was ALWAYS sent to school with no school supplies, no Valentine’s Day cards, no snacks when it was my day to bring snacks for everyone, no birthday cupcakes for the class, no notes saying that I saw the doctor before school started when I came late (for which I was often punished by my teachers, despite not having been the one responsible—as if I could just drive myself to the store at five years old and pick these things up myself!).
#67 Double Life
My pawpaw had a secret girlfriend for several decades. We suspect some of her children might be his as well. He had 7 children with my mawmaw, and I guess to escape he’d leave and live with the girlfriend for a couple of weeks at a time. The woman lived a couple houses down from them, so my dad and his siblings never suspected anything, because he was still around the house a lot during those times.
My mawmaw didn’t like it, but she was a very prim and proper woman, and this was during a time when people didn’t air their dirty laundry and they certainly didn’t divorce. I was told that when the woman died in the early 2000s, my mawmaw sent flowers to the funeral; not sure if it was out of spite or just because that’s the kind of woman she was. No one talked about it for years and years until my mawmaw started showing signs of Alzheimer’s and dementia in her 70s. She would revert back to that time a lot. It was hard watching her relive it every day.
#68 Chairy On Top
I heard my 1-year-old’s high chair move even though nobody was near it. I asked my 3-year-old, “What was that?” and he said while pointing to the chair, “What is SHE doing here!?”
#69 Martha Stewart Wouldn’t Approve
When I was about eight or nine I was going for a dump and noticed an open box of nice cotton things on a string wrapped in plastic. “Amazing!” I thought and continued to unwrap every single one of them. I then hung them up around the bathroom in various places (door handle, taps, anywhere they would hang) I even hung them over my ears, tucking the string behind my ear so the nice cotton things sat in front of my ears, like fluffy sideburns.
Anywhoo, so I had been having an excellent time for about half an hour at a guess, and my mum knocked on the door to see why I had been in there so long. I happily opened the door, ready to show my mum my beautiful creation of hanging nice cotton-things. She found it funny, although wasn’t as appreciative as I had hoped she would be.
#70 That Time in the Park
Thankfully, my family never brings up my wedding day. It was a six-month marriage to an emotionally abusive woman that ended with infidelity, depression, and homelessness. I’m totally fine now, but I don’t ever mention it. So no one else does. My grandpa has brought the wedding up a couple of times for necessary reasons, but refers to it as, “that time we met you in the park.”
#71 Tipsy Parent Tennis
Last year my dad got blind tipsy. Like the tipsiest I have ever seen him. He kicked me and my girlfriend out of the house very loudly, and when we were packing up, he came asked why we were leaving and demanded we stay. After another five minutes, he came back and kicked us out again. We went to my mom’s house, and she was so tipsywe couldn’t wake her up. So we ended up playing Borderlands all night.
#72 The Poet Didn’t Even Know It
Not a parent but when I was a teenager I used to write bad poetry. I mean really bad poetry, the “broken heart, nobody could ever understand me” kind of poetry. I kept them to myself and didn’t share them. Fast forward 23 years and I’m helping Mom clean out my childhood home and I come across the entire stack of bad poems tucked away deep in an old box of my stuff. They’re freaking terrible and deeply, deeply personal.
I’m a grown man and I’ve got this stack of papers in my hand that makes me feel 15 years old again. The bad part of 15; the awkward, lack of confidence part of 15, the “holy crap I’m glad I never have to feel that way again” part of 15. I actually try to sneak these papers past my mom to burn them immediately outside. She sees them and asks me what I’m doing. I tell her it’s just some stuff I wrote as a kid and I’m going to burn it quick as it’s personal and I don’t want anyone to read it. She says “Your poems? Yeah, I really worried about you when I read them.” Damn it, mom.
#73 Your Lot in the Gene Pool
When I was a kid, my mom was a pretty messed up person, so I have an endless list of stories that I could offer on this subject. The one that comes to mind right now is the time she sent me to go pick up my younger brother from the pool. I, being an active 13-year-old kid, decide to join him and start playing with his friends instead.
I guess she got tired of waiting around for me and decided to come to the pool to check up on us. She showed up and found me in the pool (yes, wearing my regular street clothes, shame on me!) playing Marco Polo with the guys. She yelled my name, took her slipper off, and threw it at my head in front of everyone there.
Then she started calling me names like promiscuous for daring to swim with boys. Every guy there went quiet. I think the silence was one of the most unbearable things about this situation. It still prickles my skin when I think about it. I was so utterly embarrassed that I didn’t know what to do. I vividly remember that walk home, my head down in shame the entire time.
In hindsight, I can’t believe that I actually thought I had done something horribly wrong. I cried myself to sleep. What’s funny is that she didn’t even ask my brother to come back with us. Screw you, Mom! I’m very glad that our relationship is much better now than it was back then, but you still made my childhood a living nightmare, so screw you!
#74 Learning the Truth About Dad
I was always told by my family that my biological grandfather on mom’s side died in a rock climbing accident right before Mom was born. I found out last year that what actually happened was, while he was still attending a military college in the South in the 60s, my grandmother discovered that he liked to wear women’s clothing after finding a box of dresses in his size in his closet.
The next day, she came back to find him hanging from the ceiling, and she and two of her brothers had to smuggle his body out of the room and convince a coroner to rule it an accident. I’m honestly not even sure of who all in the family knows the truth, but anyone who does sure as heck doesn’t talk about it.
#75 I Think It’s Time for “Bye Bye Bye”!
My toddler went through a phase where she would just constantly say “Hi” to things. “Hi hi hi hi hi hi,” all day long. One day, it came out sounding more like “Die die die die die.” So I ask her, “What’s that you’re saying?” And she turns to face me and just whispers “Diiiieeeeeee…….”
#76 Man’s Worst Role Model
When I was like seven years old my entire family was having a barbecue at my house. There were probably like 15 people in total at my house. While enjoying weenies and burgers I noticed my dog dropping a dook in the backyard. For some odd reason, this sparked some kind of mindless epiphany in my head, and I found it would be an excellent idea to follow in his footsteps.
So while everyone was sitting at the table eating, I walked up to the nearest patch of grass and blooped a fat duke in front of everyone right on the grass. EVERYBODY laughed right in my face. It was easily the most embarrassing thing to happen to me. On the bright side though, it was hilarious watching my mom pick up my poop, since she was on the verge of vomiting everywhere.
#77 Vacuum Hangouts
We had a centralized vacuum system in my house growing up. Mom caught me “lying next to it.” With my pants down.
#78 You’re Breaking My Something
We witnessed a faked heart attack. It was very surreal. And her husband was so embarrassed. Here’s what happened. Grandmother didn’t like my dad very much, and she picked a fight with him, so he decided that he was going home. When grandmother realized that my stepmom (her daughter) was going to take dad’s side and go home too, she yelled a lot and then, as a last-ditch effort, dramatically clutched her chest and collapsed very carefully—it was outside, and I guess she didn’t want to bump her head or muss her clothes.
Dad offered to call 9-1-1, grandfather said it wasn’t necessary, and when grandmother realized no one was taking her seriously she opened her eyes, allowed grandfather to help her up, and went inside with him while fake sobbing. Normally she was quite nice, but she had her moments and really wasn’t happy that her daughter was grown up and had a life. Holidays usually brought out the worst in her. Which was weird because she loved cooking and celebrating.
#79 When Lines Get Crossed
For those who didn’t grow up in a time where you shared a phone with your parents, consider yourselves lucky.
For those who did…
Me: Hi, it’s Kayge! I was wondering if you were going to go to the mall tomorrow.
Girl I liked: Ummm, yea, I think so. It’s Saturday, so I usually go with my friends.
Me: Well, if you’re there, do you want to, y’know, meet somewhere and have lunch?
Girl I liked: Ummm, yea, that sounds good. Where do you want to go?
Me: Well, I was thinking…
Me: (Yelling from upstairs) MOM, I’m on the phone!
Mom: (Through the phone) Kayge, are you on the phone? I was calling my friend Riva. She’s having some people over tomorrow and I wanted to know if she wanted any potato salad.
Me: (Yelling upstairs) MOM, I’m on the phone with (Girl I Liked), GET OFF!
Mom: If you want, I can make a little extra so you can take it to judo! I know how tired you get after class. Oooh, I hope I get to go with you this week, you look so handsome in your judo outfit!
Me: Sorry, my mom can be soooooo embarrassing.
Mom: I don’t think she’s there anymore, honey.
#80 Ignoring the Truth
That my parents died from AIDS in the early 90s when I was two, but no one acknowledges it. Growing up, I never knew how my mother died, and I was told my father just “disappeared.” I remember throwing a tantrum in middle school for wanting to know what really happened to my parents. My aunt finally told me the truth. I remember crying alone in my room for hours. I’m pretty sure their deaths were the starting point for how strange my family is.
Anyhow, my family hasn’t mentioned it since then, and I’m now 27. As far as I know, we’ve never said the words HIV or AIDS aloud in my family. If it must be talked about, it’s “that disease” or something similar. My friends constantly wonder why I never mention my parents, and I still have hang ups telling people why/how they passed away. It makes me feel so conflicted inside because I know I should have nothing to feel ashamed of, but my family and society make me feel my parents’ deaths should be swept under the rug.
#81 I’m Drawing a Blank
I was driving home my three-year-old son, totally quiet, him just staring out the window…until he randomly asked “Hey dad, remember that time we all died in a fire?”
#82 Work What Your Dad’s Girlfriend Has Got
Oh boy. I was watching the Victoria Secret Fashion show. I was around eight so I was not interested in girls. But they were wearing underwear that looked comfortable. I knew I could find a pair in my dad’s drawer. Now I didn’t have a mom, so this was from his girlfriend we didn’t know about. So me and my brother put a pair on, took everything else off, and started doing flips off the bunk bed. My grandma hears all the commotion and walks into my dad’s room only to see me and my brother flipping off a bunk bed wearing nothing but girls’ underwear.
#83 Substituting Words
There have been numerous self-harm cases in my family. It’s FINALLY getting to the point where they admit that these people even existed, let alone died. One of my great uncles ended himself before I was born, and if not for all the group photos and my great aunt being a decent human, I wouldn’t have ever known his name. My mom likes to pretend they died in “car accidents” or “heart attacks.” It made for some real confusion once I got older.
#84 The Last Supper
A decade or two ago I was at my grandmother’s house for Thanksgiving dinner. It was the first time in a while the whole clan had gathered at the table, so it was fully extended with all extension leaves being used. Unfortunately, it was a somewhat cheaply made table, and once the turkey was placed in the center, it collapsed.
The center buckled under the weight and fell, causing both ends to rise up, sending the rest of the feast sliding toward the gaping maw. I managed to grab the mashed potatoes (my favorite dish), but everything else was a loss. Since I was five years old I found it hilarious, though now that I’m older I can imagine how much that must’ve sucked.
#85 Toying Around With His Memory
My nearly two-year-old son seems to love the rewarding experience of finding a lost toy together with either me or his Mum. We’ll hear from the other room “Oh!” then a pause, some rummaging and then “Where, [For example] has Thomas gone?” He’ll sound more and more concerned before coming in and asking “Daddy (or Mummy) see Thomas!”—basically asking us to help him, which of course we do and usually find it with him.
What he doesn’t know is that we both know he spends a couple of minutes at the start of each day hiding a couple of his toys around the lounge, leaves it a while, and then pretends they’re lost. What we don’t know is whether or not he can actually remember where he hid them. I assume he can’t, and so must applaud his initiative in creating a genuine problem to overcome together.
#86 No Shirt, No Shoes, No Car Ride
When I was a senior in high school back in the day, I had accidentally left the lights on in my truck all day long and had to call my dad to come to my school and help me jump start the car. Now, my father is 6’1 and has a very large belly. For some unknown reason, he shows up wearing nothing but cloth shorts and no shirt to try and jump start my car. In front of all my classmates…And if that wasn’t bad enough, he did it again another time a few years earlier when my mother had sent him out to my school to come and give me a sandwich to eat before a big football game I was in. The man’s boxers were literally longer than his shorts.
#87 Kicking When She’s Down
I was in a horrible place after losing my unborn child. That’s the exact moment my ex-husband chose to sue me for full custody of the other child. My sister consoled me and supported me through it all. I thought she was on my side. Until I realized just how deeply she had been betraying me this entire time. I don’t know if I can ever forgive her.
My sister talked my ex-husband into suing me for full custody at the exact moment I was unable to contest it properly. She also foddered his case with lies to make me look like a terrible mother, while simultaneously patting me on the back and consoling me that he was a terrible man. He didn’t win, but the case made things contentious for us for years and made it impossible to grieve with my now husband because I was in survival mode to make sure I didn’t lose my daughter.
#88 Future New York Times Bestseller
When my oldest daughter was in kindergarten, she wrote and illustrated her first book—titled “I Hope You Die in a Fire.”
#89 The Defense Didn’t Hold Up
Occasionally I would cut class in high school. Typically, I would wait until my mom left for work and then go back home before heading out again. This one day I saw her leave, so I went home. About ten minutes later the door opens so I book it into my closet. She comes upstairs and opens my bedroom door and proceeds to open the closet…of course, she sees me and yells “What are you doing home?”…I counter with “Well what are YOU doing looking in MY closet??” She took me to school
#90 Grandparental Hypocrisy
My uber-Catholic grandparents met when my grandpa was married. He left his wife, my grandmother got pregnant, and they eloped in the 40s. My grandma was 18 and my grandpa was 27. He took her to her senior prom. No one knew about this until last year…and my uncle was born “early.” Apparently no one in my family can do math and never added up the birth and marriage dates.
#91 Playing Favorites
My mom cried in the bathroom half the night because I told her to stop feeding the dogs food I was going to eat.
#92 I Swear I Heard Something Different
My 19-year-old still doesn’t swear in front of us. Tells us she doesn’t talk like that. She pocket dialed me the other day and I heard her drop some f-bombs. It was hilarious, still haven’t told her.
#93 Director’s Cut Commentary
My mom went through this phase where she would talk out loud during movies, specifically about whatever is going on in the movie. She was also terrible at paying attention to what was going on, so often times what she was explaining was totally incorrect. In addition, she would try to talk over the movie. Mom would occasionally have to yell to make sure that she was being heard over the action scenes. Imagine, if you will, watching the aftermath of the stampede scene from The Lion King and the person next to you in the theater yelling out “SIMBA IS SAD BECAUSE HER DAD DIED!”
#94 Friend Bear
Okay, so my daughter is now almost two and has long since moved into her own room. We have one of those video monitor things where you can see/hear the baby on this little TV thing or you can turn the picture off and just get sound. So one night maybe a month ago I’m sitting in bed, scrolling through Reddit or something, and I start hearing my daughter babbling to herself. Now, it’s really late, like one or two in the morning. Much later than she is ever awake unless something is wrong and she is sick or cutting a tooth or something.
So I turn the picture on the monitor on and see her standing up in her crib facing sort of diagonally away from the camera. I can see her hands in front of her but only like half of her face. Now is a good time to mention that we have been teaching her ASL since she was about three months old, and she has been responding and conversing in sign since about ten months. I can see her signing things like “nice,” “silly,” and “fun” and, oddly enough, “no,” “don’t like” and “bear.” Of course being the good and loving mother I am (and really not wanting to deal with an overly sleepy baby in the morning) I get up to see what the heck she is doing.
When I get to her room she is still standing up and signing/babbling towards the far corner of her room. I ask her what she is doing and who she is talking to and she signs/says (as best as she can) “friend” which she does with her whole hands and not just her index fingers and signs “bear” again. I tell her that no, see Bear (who is actually one of her stuffed toys) is in bed behind her not in the corner of the room but she just giggles at me and signs/says “silly” and “mommy.”
I can see she is wide awake so I sit down in the rocker next to her bed and try to figure out what woke her up but all she will tell me is “friend” and “bear” and occasionally duck down like she is hiding and making shhh noises. I finally get fed up and ask her who Friend Bear is and her response literally gave me chills because she doesn’t speak well yet but she managed to say, very clearly and with the most serious face a 20-month-old can pull off, “No name, no name, shhhhh.”
Well now I am well and truly freaked out so I tell her to ask “No Name Friend Bear” to go home because it is too late to play and I did what any good loving mother would do. I gave her a pacifier, went back to my room, turned off the monitor entirely and hid under the covers in my room where my good and loving husband would protect me from nameless invisible bears.
#95 Very Specific Taste
My little sister is 10 years younger than me. When she was in about sixth grade, she’d invite the neighbor over and they’d use my mom’s laptop after she went to bed. Mom checked her browsing history one day and there were pages and pages of adult video searches of really specific stuff. My favorite was probably “Amazing World of Gumball adult videos.” The best part was when she later asked my dad to borrow his laptop. Jokingly he said, “Sure, long as you don’t look up inappropriate material.” She got really defensive and said “Uh! I would never do that, dad!”
#96 He Clearly Didn’t Think That Through…
My son does illicit substances in the attic at night. It has a vent that goes right to our bedroom.
#97 He Knows Too Much
I pulled out a wad of money one day. My little kid promptly yelled “STRIPPERS!!!” Not sure who taught him that…
#98 Like the Brother Never Even Existed
My brother who died. We never, ever talk about him. It’s so strange, growing up I knew I had a brother and I knew he was hit and ended by a car walking home, but I don’t know anything about him aside from that. I’ve seen his pictures, I know what he looked like. I don’t know anything about his personality, his likes or his dislikes, the type of music he listened to. I once found his comics in my mom’s closet when I was younger, but that was about it.
It is almost like it’s just a story and he wasn’t a real person. It wasn’t until my grandfather died about 11 years ago that my mother and I walked to his grave. She broke down into an inaudible mess, and it really hit me for the first time ever that he was a real person, as crazy as that sounds. I don’t understand that pain of losing a child, but it hurt to see my mom mourn like that, almost as if it had just happened.
The only time since then he was ever mentioned was by my dad a few months ago. Out of my mother, father, and sisters, I’m the tallest. My dad told me how the only one of us who was taller than me was Jimmy, and how he always seemed to keep growing, how he probably would have towered over me. I almost cried. I wish I got to know him.
#99 Frighteningly Accurate
My dad watched his mother die of a ruptured gallbladder when he was 12 and still remembers it vividly. My sister, one day, randomly gets up almost an hour after she’s gone to bed and goes up to him. The conversation went like this:
Sister: Daddy, your mommy died in a red sweater, jeans, sneakers and with her hair in a ponytail, right? And her hair was blonde?
Dad: Drops book he’s reading and stares, wide-eyed, and then says Yes…
Sister: What color were her eyes?
Dad: Blue… why?
Sister: Oh, she doesn’t have them anymore, just empty sockets. I was curious.
And she goes right back to bed.
#100 A Sweet Treat Before It Ends
When I was in kindergarten my dad would routinely show up, sign me out of class, and take me for ice cream. Best memory ever.
In retrospect, my dad knew he was dying, and passed when I was 6. He routinely did stuff like this. I feel as if I missed nothing, I’m now 35.
#101 To Each Their Own
My son had a pet caterpillar that he let walk all over his private area and got an allergic reaction. He said it happened in the middle of the night when he was sleeping but we know it happened because he liked it. Sigh.
#102 I’d Rather You Didn’t
My six-year-old daughter was in the passenger seat a few days ago and looked at me and said, “Dad, when I’m seven I’m going to hurt you. No wait, when I’m eight.” I asked, “How are you going to do that?” She smiled and said, “I’m gonna drive over your head with this car.”
Thanks to our friends at Factinate.com for sharing this article with us!