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Every family has its secrets and lies and history. When COVID is over, If every family member everywhere got loaded at the next gathering, and decided to open the family's "Pandora's Box," a whole lot of trouble would be afoot. There are dark tales, crimes and misdemeanors, and Dateline NBC level nonsense littered throughout all of our family tress. Be grateful you don't know what you don't know.


Redditor u/llsuperninjall wanted to hear about what some of us have uncovered about our family "histories" by asking... What's the darkest secret you found out about a family member/ relative?

Losing Her

Two years ago I found out that my Dad had a wife before my Mom and she died in a freak accident on their wedding night. She was sleep walking and fell to her death over the balcony if anyone was wondering. I feel so bad for him. He slept through it and didn't find out until the cops arrived at his door. :(

Now I understand why my Dad always worshipped my mother and caters to her every whim because she can be a little bit of a handful.

Also my Mom said that when he introduced her to his old friends they were eerily extra super nice to her.

PookSpeak

Dad

My father tried to kill my mother while she was pregnant with me. I found out about this when I was 20. My mom told me in private. She said back then my father had a drinking problem and he would get really violent sometimes. She said something to him one time so he grabbed a knife, pushed her next to an open window and put the knife at her throat. Made her choose between jumping from the 4th floor or get her throat slit.

My mom said she cried and begged him to not kill her and think of the unborn baby (me). Some neighbours heard the noise and intervened. They managed to take the knife away from him. She was safe. Police didn't get involved. This was during communist times so back then apparently domestic issues like these were ignored. This was one of the times he was violent with her. My mom is religious and doesn't believe in divorce. They're still together after 45 years.

His violent tendencies toned down after me and my brothers were old enough to knock him out if he tried that crap again.

I'm the only one in my family, besides my mom, that knows this happened. I've always had problems with him but I hated him bitterly after my mom told me what happened then and other times as well.

I'm not a religious man, but I wish hell existed just so he could rot in it.

GloryGloryLater

Taking the Stand

Step father was cheating on mother. Didn't find out because he was caught cheating; found out because he and his mistress were drunk, got in a fight, and he punched her so hard that she fell over and died. Found out about the whole thing during the investigation, the trial, and the conviction. Was weird to have a lawyer want to call 12 year old me to a stand to defend the character of a man I already had very little interaction and a fear of, and that was before the manslaughter charge.

blazedanddefused

She Did It

I found out that my grandfather's first wife (before my grandma) died of botulism from eating some tomatoes she had canned at home. She could have been saved, but he refused to take her to the doctor because the botulism was her "fault." He let her die to teach her a lesson.

Edit: They had two kids he left motherless.

Filiaeagricola

Mom's a bit much...

A few years before he passed, my dad and I had a long heart to heart, at the end of which, he told me he wasn't the one to first sleep with my mom on their honeymoon.

He caught her in bed with her cousin, with which she was had been in love for a long time.

He spoke with their pastor, who told him to forgive and forget.

That worked, until 6 years later, when he caught her again, with the same cousin. He told me he wanted to leave with me but ultimately decided to stay, because he wanted me to have a family.

With all that happened in my childhood, and to him (workaholic, diabetes, heart attack), I wish he'd left and be happy instead.

Bassman1976

The Mystery

There is strong debate in our family as to whether my aunt fell out of the window of her flat, whether she jumped or was pushed. She survived, but with brain damage, and says she can't remember.

Smart-Connection6154

My Cousin's Past

I found out from my dad that one of my cousins isn't related to anyone in the family. My aunt and her mother used to work at a hospital maternity ward and apparently a woman came in one day and gave birth to him and then left the next day without him. My aunt decided to adopt him, but a few months later the woman showed up again asking where he was. They both lied that he was given up and didn't have a clue where he was.

They still haven't told my cousin anything.

Existed_

2 of Us

My mother "supposedly" has a fraternal twin. My grandmother couldn't handle the thought of two kids so she gave the male child away to someone she knew that was moving away.

In a drug induced rage one night my grandmother screamed at my mom that she kept the wrong child; it was never mentioned before or after that moment.

My mom was roughly 12 at the time. She asked my great grandmother about it and she knew the boy's name but not where they moved to or who he was living with. My mom actually had met him once but didn't know who he actually was. My grandmother denies it ever happened and my grandfather felt that "surely they'd have had to tell me".

I doubt they would have though.

When she was pregnant with me, my mom asked my great-grandmother what my middle name should be: my middle name is actually his middle name.

Edit: fraternal twins, not paternal twins.

psychotrshman

Unhappiness...

My dad told me that, before my mom and dad broke up, he hadn't been happy with her for several years. My mother even had a miscarriage at one point, which destroyed the both of them. But he couldn't leave her, because he was afraid that she would hurt herself. So his only thought was to have a kid with her, so that motherly instinct would hopefully prevent her from killing herself.

SnooDonuts5850

The Kray Twins

My biological grandfather threatened to kill my grandmother while she was very young and pregnant with my uncle. (Long story short, he was engaged to someone else).

My grandmother became a nervous wreck while pregnant and wouldn't leave the house and he used to throw bricks through the window. Eventually she told some of her friends about what he'd threatened to do to her. Shortly after that he went missing, never to be seen or heard from again.

We always kind of laughed and joked that one of her friends must have threatened him or 'ran him out of town'. We would even go as far to say someone might have killed him for her.

It wasn't until we were going through her boxes of photos and 'love letters' we realised she was actually friends with the Kray twins...

blxndeandblue

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Image by Mandyme27 from Pixabay

It’s weird how much stuff we let slide when we’re kids. Even if you look at the TV shows we watched back then, we had such a high threshold for the bizarre (early 2000’s Nickelodeon, anyone?). So it’s no surprise that some of us straight-up didn’t react when we saw weird crap in person.

Here are a few wild examples of seemingly harmless things we saw as kids that would be horrifying to see now. Brace yourself, this one gets crazy.



Kids and water aren’t a great mix sometimes. It can get real gross, real quick.

Not worth the tranquility.

I've always loved the tranquil feeling of being under water. When I was a kid I would just hold my breath and float around. Sometimes adults would think I was drowning and run up and scoop me out. I don't remember this (it was when I was pretty young) but my parents have told me about it

I used to think it was a funny story... people thinking I was drowning when I was just trying to relax

....until I watched a video explaining child drownings and yeah, the way I acted in water looked exactly like a drowned kid.

I don't think it's funny anymore.

Turboshot49cents

Uhhhhhh.....ew?

Renee Zellweger Water GIF by Working Title Giphy

Flood water. It was fun and games for the kids, and we even splashed around in it, much to the horror of our parents (who immediately scrubbed us down). We didn't understand then, but now, oh wow...sewer, insects, rats, parasites, etc.

MrFantasticallyNerdy

That’s actually hilarious.

My friend and I were walking along the road in about thigh high flood waters. A small boat with two men comes up to us. We were about 9 years old and I think they were National Guard. Anyway, one of the men asks if we remembered exactly where the manholes in the road were. We answered no. He told us that all of the covers had most likely been washed away in the flood but not to worry because it would probably only take them a few days to find our bodies if we were sucked down one of the holes by currents they produced. He spoke in a matter of fact tone and then left.

As an adult, I have zero doubt those two men had a good laugh as they looked back and watched us nope out of that water like two roadrunners in a cartoon.

Edit: It was Fish and Game Wardens. The NG didn't come until later.

Daykri3

Not to mention the crazy injuries that kids somehow are constantly surrounded by.

Had a jogger get hit by a car outside my house once when I was about eight or nine. My nephew came running inside yelling at my parents and my sister to call the ambulance because he was bleeding pretty badly.

I could even see him from our playrooms window and I wondered what he was doing lying on the grass. Turns out he was bleeding out pretty badly, deliriously yelling at my parents when they tried to help.

Eventually, an ambulance came and picked him up, but my parents always told me he made it out okay. The day after, in the spot he was found someone had put a lily in the grass in a vase.

It took me longer than I care to admit to figure out he died from the hit and run.

SixthUnderminer

How sharp were they, though?

A kid f*cking sharpened his fingers with an automatic pencil sharpener at grade 2. Everyone didn't know what was going on until the teacher started freaking out.

NubbishWood

I just remembered I tried to stick my finger into electric pencil sharpeners as a kid and disliked how my fingers were too big to fit in it. What the hell was I thinking?

BSPlanes

Rock climbing can definitely be dangerous.

scared george costanza GIF by HULU Giphy

We did climbing in PE (sixth to eight grade). Like rock climbing and we had to do our own harness and stuff. PE teacher (supposedly) checked it after we were done to make sure it was done right. One day my neighbor broke an arm and leg because she wasn't properly strapped and fell.

This was at an international American school in Egypt around year 2000, for all those wondering what type of school does rock climbing.

Ashleywalz90

Kids are, in fact, made of elastic.

We used to jump of our roof. First time hurt a little, but after a few times you learnt how to land.

Did it regularly and would try various items as 'parachutes' to see if it slows you down any.

I look at that height now and wonder how the hell we never broke anything - kids bones are more elastic I guess.

Reapr

​It’s amazing what adults can get away with right under kids’ noses.

A casual hit-and-run.

car japan GIF Giphy

My babysitter was running late to take me to piano lessons and rear ended an old man at a stoplight. She told me that he must not have noticed because he didn't get out of his car. I thought nothing of it, and she drove away and took me to my piano lesson.

I forgot about it, and it didn't click until I remembered the incident years later that I had been unknowingly involved in a hit and run.

Idontknowwhattoput22

Big yikes.

Not so much something I saw - but when I was 5 or 6 I was at a family wedding, and there was this really friendly adult guy (who I didn't know) who told me he was really worried about his nice new car in the parking lot and how he wanted to check on the car but didn't want to leave the wedding.

He asked if I could go check on it and he would pay me $5 just to go see if his car was "okay" being that age $5 was a crazy amount of money so I couldn't believe my luck.

On the way to the parking lot, my mom intercepted me and was absolutely horrified, I remember not understanding why, like trying to tell her no she had it wrong he was nice and paying me! And as an adult now I'm like that's so messed up and I wonder how close a call that could have been.

DeclanAF

Go grandma!

Until the age of 12 my grandma had custody of me. I used to sleep with her and she slept with a baseball bat next to her bed. It wasn't until I was much older that I realized she did it dads friends wouldn't be able to do anything to me.

Dad was a drug addict and drunk and when he was out of prison he had all kinds of people in and out of the house. You would never know what would be missing the next day - often my Nintendo :(

She did everything she could to protect me from God knows who/what and I had zero clue!

Edit: Damn this blew up while I was sleeping!! Thank you so much to everyone for the support :)

Im adding extra details to help understand the situation.

My grandmother was born in 1914, had a third grade education and was a housewife her entire life. She was already 71 when I was born! My grandpa died when I was 4 and it was just her and I. We lived in a tiny 2 bedroom house in a terrible neighborhood. It was paid off and that's all she could afford. She lived off of the social security death benefits from my grandpa and food banks. She couldn't just "leave" and go anywhere else.

Also, for those suggesting she should have called the cops - cops don't do anything if you say "I'm scared these guys will do something bad" cops have to wait till something bad happens.

She did her very best and raised my right! Now my father is back in prison (shocker) and is pissed at me for not letting the past be in the past and welcoming him with open arms. Meanwhile I'm a 2x college graduate with a great job, my own house and recently married! She definitely did something right. Unfortunately she died when I was 12. Id give anything to be able to tell her how grateful I am to her for doing everything right.

LostLadyA


We see some scary stuff as kids. No wonder most of us are so messed up years later. Often these things don’t even register as something terrible- a lot of times, the things we witnessed were just a part of life.

The best we can do is to take our trauma, and learn from it, so we don’t pass it down to our own children. Because kids don’t deserve it- they deserve to have happy childhoods and not think about the horrors of the world.