Secrets have a tendency to come out in the most unexpected ways. Either they are revealed willingly or not intended to be revealed at all.
The darkest secrets are the ones that people prefer to take to the grave rather than be disclosed.
Below are 30 of the darkest secrets that were revealed – they will leave you baffled and wishing that they had been kept hidden.
Who’s the Father?
My good friend, who is 28 and has two siblings in their mid-20s, also has a 15-year-old little brother. The little brother is only a half-brother but doesn’t know.
Their mom moved out when the kids were in middle school, lived with another man for a year, and the man left her when she got pregnant.
The dad took her back in and raised the now 15-year-old as his own. Of course, the older siblings knew because they were in middle school at the time, so it was pretty obvious because of the timing.
The parents have actually asked that they not tell the little brother, though, because they
don’t want him to feel less loved by his “dad”.
The next story is about a kid who received a very mysterious letter in the mail.
The Mysterious Notes
When I was about six, I came home from school with my mom, picked up the mail, and put it on the table. Among the letters I saw a note addressed to me that said, “I’ve noticed you looking down lately. Let me take you shopping and cheer you up. Love, Paul”.
Before I had time to process it, my mom snatched it away from my hand—and said something very suspicious: “That’s not for you!”…even though it had my name on it. I didn’t know if I had a creepy stalker when I was six, if my mom was seeing someone and using my name, or if it was anything else.
It seemed really odd at the time, and nothing was said about it for the 17 years since then. Several other occasions later, I found other evidence of weird stuff going on in my mom’s life.
She would hide her phone from me when I walked in the room, rubbers in the bag she used when she was on work trips—my dad had a vasectomy in 1990—so I guess cheating wasn’t beyond her, but why did that note have my name on it? I still have no idea.
The next story is about a father who did everything he could to save his son.
I always assumed my hardscrabble tenant farmer maternal grandfather had never been able to own his own farm. Later, I learned the dark truth.
It turned out that his son, my uncle, was a gambling junkie and had some debts. They would have cost him, and possibly other family members, their lives had my grandfather not sold his farm to bail my uncle out. I learned this after both of them were gone.
The next story is about finding out the sad truth about a parent.
A Heartbreaking Discovery
A year after my parents divorced, my father took early retirement, sold the house, and moved with his mother from Ohio to Florida. All of this was very sudden and rushed; he accepted the first offer that was made on the house.
He passed away 18 months later. In his effects, we found his medical records—and that’s when we learned the heartbreaking truth.
He had pancreatic cancer, did nothing to treat it, and never told a soul. He found out, retired, moved someplace warm, and waited. I also found his medals from his time in the Marines, including a Bronze Star and Purple Heart. My father was the poster child for PTSD.
A few years later, Grandma and I had a real heart-to-heart. She said I never really met the real him, a piece of him never really left Vietnam. He expired a broken and depressed man and told no one he knew that his time was up.
The next story is about a man that wished his life was somehow different from what it was in reality.
Wishing for a Different Life
I told my fiancée on our first date that I didn’t want or like children. I kept saying it for five years, then the worst happened.
She got pregnant and decided to keep it. Now she doesn’t clean, cook, or play with the kid because she is tired, and I’m stuck with all of it. She won’t even teach him to sleep without diapers because she doesn’t want to wake up in the middle of the night, so I have to deal with that as well.
I love my son and would give my life for him, but my dark secret is that this life is not for me. Every day I wish for the end so I can rest and have peace.
The next story is about two kids finding out about their mother’s tragic past.
The Young Widow
When my brother and I were young kids, our mother confessed a tragic secret. Turns out she had been married before meeting our dad. Her husband lost his life in Vietnam or something service-related when she was only 21.
It blew our minds that we may not have existed. I now see why we were not told about this sooner. It also explained the mysterious birthday cards we received from “grandma’s neighbor”, who was actually the mother of the deceased.
The next story is about a kid who had a very disturbing problem in his bedroom.
We had a cockroach problem when I was a kid. We kept putting down traps and spraying stuff around the house but could never figure out where they were coming from. As time passed, my parents decided I needed a new mattress for my waterbed, so we drained it.
My dad pulled up the mattress and started freaking out at a horrifying discovery. I was in a separate room, so they thought I didn’t hear, but the roach nest was under my waterbed mattress.
It had a pinhole leak which created the perfect environment for them. Since I wasn’t in the room, all I was told was that something went wrong when he was draining it, and water sprayed everywhere.
However, I heard them talking quietly about how THAT must have been why I had so many sleeping problems and why cockroaches were crawling on me while I was asleep. I try not to think about it often.
The next story is about a woman who went through a terrifying experience.
A Harrowing Experience
The real reason my aunt moved back to my hometown was that she was briefly abducted by some bad guys she had convicted of a crime while working as a judge. This guy held her against her will and told her she could either leave town in the next 24 hours or be taken back in.
I was about eight at the time, so everyone just told me she moved back because she missed us all. I found out about it when my brother and I were rehashing old stuff ten years later.
The next story is about siblings who find out that they might have a bigger family than they thought.
Lost-Lost Family Member
When I was 16, my parents got into a big fight, which wasn’t unusual. During the course of the fight, my dad kept yelling, “Why don’t you tell them?” Finally, through massive amounts of tears, my mom told my siblings her secret.
Apparently, we had an older half-brother. My mom became pregnant at 16 and gave the baby up for adoption. I later found out that my whole family knew, except for my siblings and me.
My mom didn’t want to interfere with his life, so a few years later I looked him up on MySpace.
I was pretty nervous, but it turned out for the best. He and my mom reunited and now he is a part of our lives.
The person in the next story found out about a sordid story involving their parents.
The Secret Affair
I found out that I was the product of an affair and the reason my parents both divorced their spouses. My dad had two kids with his wife and had been on the fence about divorcing her.
My mom was married and living in Detroit with her husband. I guess that marriage was having its problems as well.
My parents both worked at the same place and started talking. On Valentine’s Day in 1988, they were both sloshed and apparently decided against protection; hence, I was conceived. Due to my being conceived, my mother finalized her divorce and moved out.
My dad was not allowed back into his marriage either and moved back into my grandparents’ farm. Somewhere along the way, when I was about two, my dad moved in with my mother and me and has lived with us ever since.
However, my mother’s ex-husband is on my birth certificate, which is what raised the question about my paternity in the first place. I have an excellent relationship with my half-brother and sister, and they hold nothing against me. Finding out that you were a mistake is kind of messed up, but I’m okay with it.
The person in the next story would find out the real nature of their conception.
My cousin is adopted, but for years we kept it a secret because she didn’t know. I was talking about it with my dad one day because I couldn’t believe she didn’t know.
During the conversation, he let it slip that my older sister was conceived using donor sperm. After a moment, he added that I, too, was conceived using a donor.
Our two younger siblings, however, were not and were completely unexpected. It turned out that my older sister knew, but my mom made both my sister and dad promise not to tell me.
I’m not entirely sure why I wasn’t supposed to know, but they managed to keep it a secret until I was 22 years old.
The family in the next story was cast aside after they did a good deed.
My father’s siblings and their families don’t talk to us anymore since my grandmother’s passing. I was told that they were just too busy working and doing their own thing to hang out like we all used to.
On the off chance I saw them, I would always be the first and only one to say “hi” and try to catch up. About the time I was 18, I was told the real reason they didn’t talk to us anymore.
They had turned their backs on my grandmother when she was on her last legs and about to lose her house. So, my father stepped up and tried to convince his siblings to help save the house and help with the medical bills.
They turned their backs on her and my father, so my father ended up buying the house and restoring it.
When my grandmother passed, my father’s siblings tried to “claim their piece of Mom’s money” even though they didn’t do anything for her when she was losing her life. To this day, they refuse to associate themselves with my father, mother, sister, and me.
The next story is about a family tree that was not what it was supposed to be.
I learned that the grandfather I grew up with was not my biological grandfather. I found out when I was in my early thirties after he had passed.
My grandmother told me the night of his wake that he never got over his anger at the Catholic Church for refusing to marry them since she had already been married once. I responded, “Wait, what?”
She replied, “Oh, you didn’t know that papa wasn’t your biological grandfather? I guess you just learned something about yourself today!” But that wasn’t the only shocker. I then learned that my grandma’s first husband was also not my biological grandfather.
Turns out my mother was actually the product of an affair. I found that one out via an Ancestry.com DNA test.
My biological grandfather and uncle coincidentally took the test as well and popped up as “closely related”. My new uncle then contacted me, thinking he had solved a different family mystery of his own, and I asked my mom if she knew anything about the family.
When my mom asked my grandma, my grandma spilled the beans. My biological grandfather also didn’t know.
The woman in the next story would find out that she was erased from existence by her own father.
The Forgotten Daughter
My grandmother was the illegitimate daughter of a state assemblyman. I thought that was almost kind of cool until I found out that he marked her as deceased on her birth certificate.
He likely never acknowledged her until her mother and sisters passed—probably in a flu epidemic—then he took her into his home. There, she worked as a maid for him, his mean wife, and their children.
She finally met my grandfather at a barn dance and was able to leave that house. She was the sweetest, most generous small-town lady out there. I would never have known she had a difficult life in her youth.
She never talked about it, and I don’t think even her own children knew the whole story until she was in her nineties and genealogy became a hobby for someone in the extended family.
The person in the next story would find out that their parents were not who they thought they were.
I found out that the people I thought were my parents were actually my grandparents. My birth mother—the person I was raised to believe was my eldest sister—got pregnant at 14 and had me.
She wasn’t ready to raise me, so my grandparents adopted me and raised me. They’re my mom and dad and always will be.
I was around ten when I found out, and it all came out in the worst way. It was during a fight between my parents. There were drinks involved and a lot of shouting.
I was trying to get them to calm down when Dad let slip, “Well, why don’t you go ask your real mother?” The way he said it was filled with venom and hurt. He left my mom and me to talk about it.
My mom told me the whole deal then. She mentioned that my sister wanted so little to do with me one night that she literally left me on the doorstep and walked right over me to go on a night out.
Apparently, the rest of my mom’s family didn’t approve of her taking me in, so we moved across the country for a fresh start.
The next story is about a man who didn’t care about the people around him.
The Horrible Ex
I’m happy my mom’s ex is no longer alive. The dude was a menace. He frequently had outbursts where he would destroy our apartment and threaten my siblings or my mom.
His family and friends all thought he was harmless but didn’t want to deal with him. One day, he was having another meltdown, and my mom and siblings were hiding in my room.
I was holding the door shut while he was trying to get in, so I called the authorities. The guy blamed me for years after that and targeted me often.
One day, some neighborhood boys tried to hurt me, and when I mentioned it, he convinced himself that I must’ve led those boys on and kept inviting them over. But that wasn’t all.
I also had to take care of him when he shattered the bones in his arm and hand, and traveling nurses refused to come to our house to flush his IV. I imagine he was terrible to them too.
The next story is about someone wishing they had more time with someone they loved.
Not a Mother Figure
I miss my mom—a lot. She is still alive but is barely in my life because she was extremely terrible for my entire childhood. I ended up moving in with my dad after she tossed me out, and I had no contact with her for about a year.
I’m talking to her again because it’s easier now that she has moved to another state, but it’s not enough.
I just want her to hug me, even knowing there will be a metaphorical knife in my back if I do. I have many memories of her as a kid that were mostly bad, but there were a few that weren’t, and I miss that.
The next story is about a cousin who wishes someone dear to them got the help he needed.
My cousin has Asperger’s, and only my immediate family will admit it, even though it’s blindingly obvious and makes his life very difficult.
He’s in his mid-20s and has dropped out of college, lived in a state-assisted apartment—which he eventually got tossed out of—and at one point moved into a trailer park with a woman at least 15 years his senior and her young daughter.
He has all the tendencies of Asperger’s and my parents, who are psychologists, realized it as well. I think his life would be a lot easier if he was able to receive treatment, as I know many people with Asperger’s can live normal lives.
A few years ago, my dad attempted to tell my aunt, but she flipped out and screamed at him in total denial.
The person in the next story would learn that it’s very common to have a family member that no one wants to acknowledge.
The Secret Uncle
I found out at my grandmother’s funeral that she had a brother whom no one EVER spoke to or talked about. I have a small, close-knit family, and I had never even heard he existed.
It turns out he lives in Florida and writes conspiracy theory books about reptilians/alien people in the government. There’s a published author in my family!
The next story is about someone finding out their uncle had a tumultuous past.
A Secret Life
I had an uncle who was successful. He taught industrial art design in a known school in a big city, had a nice little house downtown, and was basically the coolest, nicest guy you could ever meet. He didn’t have a mean bone in his body and was all about positivity.
One day, I noticed that when his watch rode up, he had a tiny little “J” tattooed on his wrist. I asked about it, and he immediately shut down and said it was nothing before excusing himself and walking away. I was shocked since he had never been cold to me before.
I asked my mother about it, and it turned out that he was in a gang when he was younger. I guess it got a bit serious, and when one of his good friends lost his life, he got out and got serious about growing up and flying straight—which he did.
He started crushing his schoolwork, dedicating himself to wood and metalworking and went on to be a success.
The next story is about a well-known secret in the family.
The Last To Know
For years, I felt like there was something I didn’t know about my family. I wasn’t sure why, I just did. I would bring it up to my mom over the years, but she’d say I was just being silly.
Years later, after my cousin lost his life driving under the influence, my mom told me she had something to say.
It turned out the man I thought was my birth father wasn’t, someone else was. I was in my early 20s and took it in good stride. My dad thought I would freak out and was glad I didn’t.
What did shock me was the fact that EVERYONE in my family knew—my aunts, uncles, older cousins, etc.
How they hid that information so well over the years kind of freaked me out.
The next story is about a woman who developed an unlikely relationship.
The Other Best Friend
I have had the same best friend since I was 16; we met in high school. When we turned 19, she met her husband. I quickly became closer to him than my best friend. We developed a deep brother-sister-type bond.
My best friend had cognitive disabilities and anxiety, so I would vent to him because he was just easier to talk to. Then her husband lost his life to leukemia.
I stepped up and helped my best friend through the transition. I planned a memorial service, paid for the cremation, and was basically a rock, but I was completely gutted internally. I do not trust easily, and her husband was one of the few people I felt I could say anything to.
The loss was hard for me, and I had nowhere to go with the pain because the one person I would talk to about it was him, and he was gone. It was a complicated mix to deal with.
The next story is about someone who made their friend happy in the most unusual way.
My friend goes on and on about how many Twitch followers he has and how he’s getting so big as a streamer, etc. But there’s something he doesn’t know.
Most of his followers/viewers are me. He was so depressed that nobody was tuning in that I used a Google Workspace account and a ton of aliases to spawn Twitch accounts to follow and watch him.
However, it’s gotten out of control, and he keeps trying to brag about how many viewers and subscribers he has. I’m not sure how to proceed because he was pretty depressed before I created all the followers, and I am worried he’ll get depressed again if I slowly stop doing it.
The next story proves that some things don’t always go according to plan.
Happier Ever After
My dad is my mom’s second husband. The first marriage was not necessarily hidden, it has just become forgotten and was never spoken about in front of my siblings or me.
When I figured it out and asked my mother, she explained that she married rather young, following the Asian tradition of arranged marriages.
Her in-laws were strict and demanding, which left her unhappy and wanting more in life than becoming a housewife. She divorced and started studying abroad, where she then met my dad. They’ve now been happily married for almost 21 years.
The next story is about a grandfather who had roving eyes and feet.
My grandfather had an affair with an English woman back in 1941, when he went to study there, and fathered a daughter with her. Unfortunately, he showed his true colors when he left them both and came back home.
Eighteen years after his passing, my aunt, grandmother, and mother found out about it after my aunt saw the daughter in a picture.
They contacted her, and both parties shared their connection to my grandfather. She said he left her and the mother and didn’t even try to contact them again. It was really sad because I looked up to my grandad, and this really dampened his image in my eyes.
The person in the next story proves that not everyone in your life is genuine.
What Are Friends For
I hate my friends, and I think I’ve always hated some aspects of them. I’ve tried so hard to change my views and my ways because they don’t deserve that, but I can’t stand people.
Their quirks and their laughs grate on my ears, and their needs are too heavy for me to want to be burdened. I find no interest in the things they like or the foods they enjoy.
The jokes they find funny seem stupid to me, and I’m exhausted from pretending to enjoy my time with them.
I’m going to be moving out after being very close with all of them for the past two years, and I couldn’t be happier. I’m better off keeping this weight away from people who don’t deserve it.
The next story is about someone who dreamed about the not-so-innocent boy next door.
I used to fantasize about hooking up with the rich college guy who rented a room at my family’s house. He was a varsity player on my grandpa’s football college team, and his mom had moved to Australia, so he needed a place to stay.
About a year or two ago, I found out from my uncle that he moved to Australia as well, shortly after he was caught using steroids by one of my uncles.
The next story is about a woman who left everything behind to start a life in a new country.
My great-aunt ran away with an American serviceman back in the day. She was engaged and on a pre-marriage trip with her fiancé in Germany when she met an American and ran away with him.
She left her fiancé in Germany to travel back home alone and tell her family that she had eloped. My family cut her off and never spoke to her again.
Then, when she was older, she went back home penniless, with her children staying in the US. She wanted to live with her widowed mother, who was living on a very small pension.
In a mysterious turn of events, no one knows what happened to her after her mother passed. I found out about this all at a family gathering.
The next story is about someone who has a fear of something we all can relate to once in a while.
My friends, roommates, and family know that I’m scared of bugs, but they don’t know that I’m downright horrified by them, to the point where it’s probably an actual phobia.
A few weeks ago, a mosquito was trapped in my room for a few days. I saw it multiple times, and it would bite me in my sleep. Despite knowing better, I haven’t been able to sleep, thinking I have bed bugs which I don’t.
Even so, my reaction was over the top. I’ve been vacuuming my mattress, constantly washing my sheets, doing exhaustingly thorough inspections nonstop, and worst of all, when I’m tired, I can feel bugs crawling on me that I know aren’t there. It’s honestly been tormenting, and it’s negatively impacting my ability to function in daily life.
I’m rational enough to see the evidence for myself and finally convinced myself there are no bedbugs around. I’m ashamed to share it with anyone, worrying they’d think I’m crazy when I’m definitely not. I sometimes have anxiety, and I think bugs just trigger the worst of it in me.
The next story is about another family patriarch who had a big secret that no one knew about.
When my grandpa passed, we went about the normal funeral arrangements and whatnot, including putting an obituary in the local paper. Not long after the funeral, something weird happened.
There was another obituary for him in the same paper from completely different people. We were obviously confused.
I was about ten when all of this happened, but from what I remember, my grandpa had been married to another woman and had kids before he married my nana. I’m assuming she knew, but they never told my dad.
His other family was upset at us for not telling them that he had passed or inviting them to the funeral, even though we didn’t know they existed!
In order to protect the privacy of those depicted, some names, locations, and identifying characteristics have been changed and are products of the author’s imagination. Any resemblances to actual events or places or persons, living or dead, are entirely coincidental.