Look back far enough in your ancestry, and you're liable to find something dark.
But for some Redditors who posted in a recent thread, the dark secrets didn't require much digging to find.
In fact, the perpetrators—or victims, as some of the stories showed—are still alive today, complete with sealed lips and awkward family gatherings.
Redditor Al-Anka asked:
"What is your darkest family secret?"
A Key Detail Comes to Light
"My grandfather was killed in a bar when my father was still a toddler. The official story was that he was murdered over a pinball game (back then pinball was pretty serious, I guess)."
"It wasn't until recently my grandmother confessed, on her death bed, that my grandfather actually killed someone and buried the body, days before his own demise. So he was actually killed in retaliation for a murder that he committed."
"My grandmother kept this secret for almost 65 years."
For One Person, An Impossible Secret to Keep
"It's me. My dad never told his family I existed. I was shameful, maybe he was more ashamed."
"After he died they found out about me and kindly asked me not to come to the funeral. I get why he never told them."
Nepotism With an Extra Red Flag
"My dad gave a job to a cousin. I remember as a kid that this cousin I'd never heard of just suddenly popped up out of nowhere without explanation but I was a kid so didn't really think of it, but everyone made a big deal out of how great it was for my dad to give him a job."
"I found out 20 years later that the cousin had been in prison for having a relationship with a student."
Some Stones Are Better Left Un-Turned
"A year or two after her adoptive mother died, my mom went looking for information about her birth parents, and found that her birth mom and her husband had been gruesomely murdered by a drug cartel."
"There was an article about their murder in Rolling Stone magazine that had gory pictures of their bodies."
She Lived to Tell
"My cousin, once removed (my parent's cousin) was kidnapped and tortured by a serial killer. She was (after many days) dropped off near a running path with her neck slit."
"She lived (unlike the other 3) and she could lead the police to his home. He is still in prison."
"As a child I heard whispering of it and didn't find out the whole truth until I was older."
Doing The Math Solves Everything
"My grandmother was conceived during a period when her father was away for 6 months. He was a nasty and abusive man. We think her real father was the gas meter man- we only worked this out after she passed away and I don’t think she ever worked it out." -- Clippyvonnostrum
Capitalizing On Your Resources
"I had an uncle who moved far away, worked in a boiler room at a huge casino, decades ago. He was always sketchy, and he had way more money than a simple boiler room employee ought to have had."
"Rumours that the boiler room was a really useful thing for the mob, due to boilers doubling as incinerators for certain purposes. Hence the money. Many unanswered questions there."
Sounds Like Classic 1930s Stuff
"My great grandfather shot and killed a man in his grocery store back in the 30s over a poker game."
"He ran a speak easy out of the back of his store and lost almost $2k so as the guy was walking out the front after the store closed he shot him and got away with it by telling the police the man robbed him."
"It wasn't until he was on his death bed he told my grandfather what had happened."
Oh, Spies....Wait, Spies?
"So my maternal-grandfather was a Chinese professor in India and he went to China to complete his PhD at the Taiwan university in 1969 ( Taiwan was still a part of China at that time). He, along with 5 other scholars were selected in India to reconstruct diplomatic relations with the Chinese government as China and India were at war with each other from 1962. Each of the 6 scholars (including my grandfather) were assigned 6 Chinese individuals as spies so the Chinese government could have an eye on them."
"Even my grandfather took a picture of himself with the University and clearly in the picture there was a gentleman behind him sitting quietly on a bench reading newspaper. My grandfather never minded the spies as he went on to make great and life-long friends at the university." -- greenhornet_22
Based On True Events
"In the film Driving Miss Daisy, when the chauffeur (played by Morgan Freeman) is driving Miss Daisy to worship service, they get stuck in a traffic jam. He gets out to see what the hold-up is."
"When he gets back in, he says 'you won't be going to service today, somebody done bombed the temple.' (Hebrew Benevolent Congregation Temple, Atlanta, 1958)."
"She says 'What - who would do such a thing?'"
"My uncle, that's who."
The Truth Hurts A Lot More
"Everyone thinks my grandmother's mom was murdered because that's what she was told as a child. I just found her mother's (my great grandmother) death certificate. She died by suicide. I'm not going to tell my family/grandmother what I discovered because I fear it will hurt my grandmother." -- dimmudagone
Cool as Cucumbers
"Father won the lottery and we've been pretending to be poor so our family doesn't try to ask for money." -- holyydiver32
"Safest bet. Family turn at even the chance of running someone else into the ground for money. Your father is a clever man" -- Pudgeysaurus
"That's a solid strategy especially with family who believe that NO is a suggestion and not a statement." -- Goinghame
If She Found Out, It Would Kill Her All Over Again
"My second cousin killed a completely innocent man in a drunken attack when he was 16. He served a ridiculously short sentence in Youth Offenders and has been living the ski-bunny life on his rich father's money ever since..."
"This was my mother's sister's grandson. My mum's sister never told any of us. Her long-term-partner told my mum in a nasty attempt to drive a wedge between the sisters - he wanted my mum to ask her sister about it and cause a row, because he is one of those awful people who only get joy from the misery of others."
"My aunt passed a couple of years back, without ever knowing that we know about it." -- The-Sassy-Pickle
An Unfortunate Thing To Fear
"One family member killed another by leaving a bag of poisoned donuts on the front steps. We are now 'hesitant' about accepting donuts." -- grouchycyborg
"Where do you live with such frivolous donut dispersion?" -- Sigg3net
"I'm just imaging your whole family being sceptical about ever being offered a donut and it has made me chuckle. Sorry for your loss tho." -- MonsterMunch86
A Repeat Offender
"My dad’s...cousin? I think? Was a repeat murderer. When he was 20 he took his 16 year old gf to the local lumber yard and beat her to death with a piece of timber."
"He turned himself in, then when he was released years later he married, had kids, then stabbed his wife 10 times cos he was jealous she was talking to a co-worker. That was in the 80s I think and I guess he got life." -- armosnacht
You Try To Find The Silver Lining Of A Traumatic History
"Some of my relatives from the old country were in the IRA and (allegedly) helped carry out the Bloody Friday Bombing."
"My family is extremely irish, with the majority of my dads side still living in ireland. In the last few months, my dad and my grandma sat me down and told me about the "Black Family". Most irish families have Black family members. My last name actually means "outlaw" in irish, so i'm no exception to that. My great grandfather was a sniper for the IRA after the Black and Tans killed his parents. One of my relatives, Antonio, (allegedly) assisted in the Bishopsgate bombings. We also had a relative who was in the UVF, and he was lynched by his brother."
"In conclusion, terrorism sucks but being british is worse." -- TimsterGaming
When You Can't Even Decide The Worse Family Tragedy
"There’s two, and I don’t know which is worse."
"I have an older cousin. She’s probably in her 30s or 40s, not sure since it’s been a while since I’ve seen her. When I was little, I noticed she acted strange around men. I didn’t understand why at the time."
"Found out later that she was kidnapped when she was a kid (around 8-10 years old) and locked in a room by a guy. She escaped after a few days, but nobody knows how. She doesn’t talk about it, and none of us blame her. That shit sounds traumatizing."
"The second one is that when my aunt was little, her mother dated this guy for a while. Things started out ok but got worse when they began fighting. One night, my aunt heard a gunshot. Her mom was shot and killed by the guy." -- the-cynical-human
Bloodshed, adultery, and societal shunning were common themes ringing through many of the secrets shared under the cover of internet anonymity.
A look at some of the best posts may leave you feeling like sensational movies and novels aren't actually so far off from how this stuff really goes down.
Want to "know" more?
Sign up for the Knowable newsletter here.
Never miss another big, odd, funny, or heartbreaking moment again.
- People Share The Most F***ed Up Thing They've Ever Discovered ... ›
- People Share Secrets They Meant To Take To The Grave - George ... ›
- People Divulge The Darkest Secret Anyone Has Ever Told Them ... ›
- People Divulge The One Secret They've Always Wanted To Share ... ›
- People Confess Family Secrets They're Not Even Supposed To ... ›
- People Share Dark Secrets From Their Small Towns - George Takei ›
- Babysitters Share Secrets They Learned About The Parents They ... ›
- People Divulge The Most Shocking Family Secret They've Ever ... ›
- People Divulge The Family Secrets Their Parents Only Shared With ... ›
- People Divulge The Darkest Family Secrets They've Ever ... ›
- People Share Secrets They Meant To Take To The Grave - George Takei ›
- Strangers Are Sharing Their Dark Family Secrets ›
- 29 People Share Their Darkest Family Secrets They Ever Discovered ›
- Dark Family Secrets Stories ›
- People Reveal The Dark Family Secrets They're Not Supposed To ... ›
- 25 People Shared Their Dark Family Secrets, And It's Equally Juicy ... ›
- Reddit users share darkest family secrets about rape, affairs, and ... ›
- What is your darkest family secret? : r/AskReddit ›
- Reddit Users Are Sharing Deep Family Secrets That Finally Came to ... ›
- Have you ever stumbled upon a dark family secret? : r/AskReddit ›
Have you ever found yourself in a conversation, when someone brings up a topic they aren't too familiar with, but you are?
This gives you the opportunity to sweep in and share your knowledge on the subject.
While one would imagine that your relative expertise on the subject might result in thanks and appreciation, more often than not, the reaction from your friends is "why do you know that?"
Awkward as it may feel at the moment, there are very few people who don't carry some unusual areas of expertise and trivia on subjects most others are most likely unfamiliar with.
Redditor quadruple_b was curious to learn the random facts others have shared which wound up bringing their conversations to a halt, leading them to ask:
What is a really weird fact, that makes people say "why do you know that?"
Octopuses... they're just like us
"Octopuses are usually very antisocial but when they’re under the influence of ecstasy they are more willing to spend time around each other or even hug other octopuses."- Stab_That_Ukulele
The body compensates
"When you are starving, and have little body fat left, your body can grow almost fur-like hair to insulate itself in absence of fat."- A_Stupid_Fish29
"Your body’s normal functions can slow down to accommodate organ disease."
"For example, I have 40% lung function, but my O2 is completely normal at 98% saturation."
"They didn’t discover any lung disease until I had a ct scan done for other reasons and my lungs happened to show up in that."- nocturnal_numbness
What this would do for humanity!
"Cheetahs are so genetically similar that supposedly you can draw blood from one and inject it straight into another one without any health issues in the receiving animal."
"I.E. no blood type or clotting factor variations."- 0ttrbig cats cat GIF by BBC EarthGiphy
So strange, that it makes perfect sense?
"Coca-Cola can help with blood stains."- Buzzed_Woody
Good thing they don't need a toilet...
"Guinea pigs average pooping around 100 times a day."- morgandanso
"In Phoenix, Arizona, you are legally allowed to bury a dead body on your property without asking for permission/getting a permit/etc."
"The city asks that you contact them beforehand so they can send someone out to stake for gas/electric lines, but it’s not required."- hedalexa12digging sarah chalke GIFGiphy
"If provided with a mirror, dolphins will admire their own genitals."- Cymiril
The brain is a delicate creature
"There is a chemical called MPTP that specifically destroys dopaminergic neurons in the brain."
"About 3 days after someone ingests it, they get Parkinson's disease."- SheilaBoof
Gruesome with good intentions?
"In the 1960s or 70s, the Swiss Air Force dropped severed chicken heads all over the forests of Switzerland."
"The chicken heads contained the rabies vaccine, and the airdrop was to vaccinate wild foxes against rabies."- EnormousPurpleGardenfennec fox GIFGiphy
One never knows when learning this newfound information might become useful.
Especially for parents of children eager to buy a Guinea Pig...
As relationships get serious, it's understandable that one will want to know as much as possible about their significant others.
That is, until we make a discovery about them which might forever change how we view our relationship.
Sometimes, it might be a discovery that might just take some getting used to, even if we'd have been better off not knowing.
Other times, however, this newfound information makes remaining in this relationship untenable.
Redditor Mr_MightyMouse was curious to hear what people wished they'd never learned about their past and present relationships, leading them to ask:
"What is the one thing you found out about your S/O you wish you never did?"
He was anything but faithful
"He cheated on me."
"When I had cancer."- stolliolli
Her one true love... wasn't me
"She drunkenly admitted to her friends that her ex-boyfriend was the one and she’ll never get over him."
"Still not sure how to handle that information."- FreeFoot_
Complicit without knowing it.
"She was an opiate addict."
"I was funding her addiction unknowingly."
"I was helping her destroy herself and I was too stupid to realize that."- Local64bithero
Moving way too fast
"Not that it was that traumatic as we were only dating a few weeks, but she started real deal crying when I wouldn't put her on my life insurance."- Toasted_Bagels_R_Gud
Someone needs to sharpen their aim...
"I hang up a towel to dry my hands in the bathroom."
"Sometimes I would find it on the floor and think hmmm the towel fell off the rack."
"TEN YEARS GO BY."
"One day my husband casually says 'you are always so quick to do laundry, like if I accidentally pee on the floor and clean it up with the towel it is gone so quick'."
"I'm like what.... what?"
"So yea, I've been drying my hands with pee towels for 10 years."
"FML."- kperkins1982·max greenfield towel GIFGiphy
A club no one wants to belong to
"I was dating my ex for two years and she drunkenly confessed that she had cheated on every bf she had ever had."
"We broke up not long after."
"Then found out she was also cheating on me with multiple people from the office."
"I’m now happily married!"
"She also hid her then current bf from me when we first hooked up, he was asleep in another bedroom and we was in a different bed."
"She told him I missed the train home and needed a place to get my head down."- JancingSalmon
A stronger connection than they knew.
"He once dated a girl that he was getting fairly serious about until he showed up to a family event and she was there."- rowenaravenclaw0
What was he up to?
"He had a notebook of every detail of my life, including menstrual cycle, and also kept all the details of my friends and family members."
"Even ones I had never mentioned."
"And we were only together for two months."- totalfranmove
The news no one wants to hear
"That she had Cancer, which ultimately took her."
"That is literally the only thing I found out about my late wife that I ever regretted."- d20gamerguy
A happy anniversary indeed.
"This is NSFW."
"She gave me her phone to look for an address and make a restaurant reservation for our 7 year anniversary."
"I don't know why she gave me her phone, but I guess it was just destiny."
"Someone sent her a video on Whatsapp, and the next message says 'tomorrow again?'"
"From the same person."
"Now I am not one of those people who checks my partner's phone, I don't like that."
"But I was curious and clicked on it. It was a full 2 minute video of her hooking up with someone"
"Needless to say there was no anniversary dinner."- kmiaw
Even though everyone here says they wish they'd never learned these things, one has to imagine some of these people are, deep down, grateful.
As they may have been saved from trouble or pain down the line.
Even if it doesn't make these discoveries any easier.
It's ok to be naughty.
But sometimes... you wanna watch yourself.
Naughty can lead to trouble.
And we're talking adult naughty.
Maybe it's time we discussed it all.
Rule #1... Better safe than sorry.
Redditor Black_Hole_Baken-00wanted hear from all the people willing to share sexy secrets that might leave plenty of people blushing. They asked:
"What’s your most shameful NSFW moment?"
Elevators. Stairwells. Planes. You name it. I've shamed it. No Deets...
don't worry I wasn't naked...
"I was watching adult videos in the middle of the night. After I did my deed I felt a slight pain in my balls, like someone flicked their finger on them. The pain increased to the point that I had to walk it out. After some minutes I began screaming from the pain when my parents came to my room (don't worry I wasn't naked) seeing me in pain on the floor."
"At that moment I thought I did something wrong but was to ashamed to tell them.My dad rushed me to the emergency room where I was rushed in and my pants were removed. Laying there they gave me a nose spray which halted some of the pain. The doctor then started fondling my family jewels while the nurse stood next to me reminding me to breath because the nose spray stopped the automatic breathing if that makes sense."
"All the time my dad is standing there looking and the only thing I could thing at that moment was oh no do they think my unit is small. After that the doctors brought me to another room while my dad was in another room. While going trough the halls I told the doctor I probably know the cause and explained that I was pleasuring myself"
"I don't remember the doctors response but I felt truly ashamed like I was the only person doing such a thing. Later the doctor told me I had testicular Torsion which is caused by the balls not being attached to the sack so I'm living in fear of it happening again to this day."
"WHAT ARE YOU WATCHING??"
"In the 90's/early 2000's we bought a pub and moved into it. It had a big screen downstairs and we lived above, but Sky Sports was so expensive for the business account we basically hooked the giant screen to our box upstairs so whenever the sport was on it would show on the screen downstairs."
"So we couldn't watch TV upstairs except what was being shown on the big screen when this was happening. Anyway one Sunday evening around 10pm after the sport (bearing in mind the sport finished at 6pm) I was freely browsing through channels because the giant screen has been wound up into the ceiling and my 14 year old self came across some softcore adult videos"
"Curious, I started watching it. Suddenly there was a big buzz from the phone that connected to downstairs, I answer it. It's my mum with laughing in the background. "WHAT ARE YOU WATCHING??" I was like "errr.. I was just flicking through channels.." "Well you've stayed on that one for a while haven't you?"
"I forgot about the small TV in the bar area. It was still on and was showing the entire pub what my horny self was watching. I was mortified. Luckily my mum never brought it up again and neither did any of the customers thankfully."
I Gotta Go
"When i was 12 my younger sister walked in on me playing fondle the dongle. I told her I couldn't pee and was trying to force/pump it out. She told my mom out of worry. Said I needed a doctor to help me pee. When Mom confronted me about what my sister was saying i then had to explain it to her."
"My mom walked in on me. The look on her face went from incomprehension to shock to utter disgust over the span of a second or two. She stayed calm and explained how it wasn't appropriate, but I just remember how unsmiling and tense she was, totally unlike I'd ever seen her. Decades ago but still cringe so much recalling it."
Oh. My. God. Y'all are animals. And I'm LIIIIVVVING for it!
“underwear”surprise disrobing GIFGiphy
"My dad caught me editing the game files of The Sims to replace the female underwear textures with 'underwear' that just makes them look nude. Looked up reference material and edited them in photoshop. That a lot of effort to put into something so depraved."
"When i was about 10, my parents were out so I looked up some adult videos on the family computer (mistake number 1), then I kept hearing noises and thought someone was in the house so i ran to my room and called my dad, leaving to computer on (mistake number 2)."
"My dad rushed home and went around the house looking for an intruder, no one was there, it was just my next door neighbors (we have a semi-detached house) then obviously saw what i was looking at on the computer and asked me about it… i told him the intruder must of broken in and searched it up :( "
"In middle school, my friend got her boobs and she wanted me to touch them. We probably spent 30 minutes everyday before school until the librarian caught us and we were suspended."
I wonder if she knew...
"My HS gf and I were having sex in the sideways laying down cuddling position. Mom walked in to show me a new Christmas decoration. To her it looked like we were just cuddling but she sat on the bed inches away from me and proceeded to talk about the decoration for like 10 minutes. I wonder if she knew. They never cared much about that stuff so I think she was just oblivious."
"I was violently ill. In my fiancé’s house where we were living. While he was at work, his dad was working from home. I needed my mom to take me to the hospital. I screamed for my father in laws help, who entered the bathroom to my nude body, puking at t in his bathtub. He called my mom for me, and we never spoke about it."
Well I need a cold shower and more vodka.
Don't have sex with people attached to someone already.
There is no good excuse.
There is no reason that makes it worth it.
Most of the time the "reasons" are lies.
RedditorVirtual_Welder_4525wanted to hear from those willing to spill a little tea about some bedmates. They asked:
"People who knowingly have slept with someone who was in a relationship, why did you do it?"
Why do we do it? I still don't know what I was thinking.
Hot. Not.Feeling Dumb Jim Carrey GIFGiphy
"I was young and it made me feel hot/desired . It was dumb."
"She told me that she was in an open relationship but turned out that she was lying."
"Yeah, I had the same thing happen. Girl told me she was in an open relationship, I slept with her, then she told her boyfriend about it. So the next day I get a call from her boyfriend, threatening to kick my @ss."
"Story does have a happy ending though. I had text history of our conversation leading up to the hookup, as well as her texting me about how good it was after I had left. I sent him screenshots, showing proof of her saying she was in an open relationship. He dumped her and apologized for believing her."
Come to your senses...
"I was freshly 18 working a restaurant gig and the attractive shift manger took an interest. Hooked up at work a few times on overnight shifts. One day his gf came in to eat and I realized they weren’t as on and off as he said. Wish I could stay I stopped there, but it happened once or twice more before both of us came to our senses. I think he was 27? Ended up getting my number and sending me inappropriate texts for the next three months after I quit that job. I still feel slimy."
"I was 23 when it started and it went on for years and I felt like literal scum afterward every single time, but the sex was good, and I hated myself, so I figured it was the best I could do and I deserved to feel like crap. I justified it because I wasn't the only one he was cheating on his wife with, he had two or three other girls in rotation. I was just dumb and selfish and self sabotaging."
GrossBasketball Wives Ugh GIF by VH1Giphy
"'You were gone! He was here!'", Shadynasty."
Humans will just do it anywhere. Just like pigs.
"I was young and a virgin. She was gorgeous and sweet. She spun me a story about how bad her relationship was and I was hooked."
"I was 20/21 and had finally gotten out of an abusive household and was barely financially stable and not at all mentally stable. He was A LOT older than I was (his son was older than I was by a couple of years) but he did generally treat me pretty well."
"It went on for 4+ years. We were far from an ideal couple, even had he not been married, but overall it was a positive thing in my life at a time when I really needed it, and it became a safety net. It ended years ago and I feel deeply ashamed of it and my actions."
"But I've grown enough to know that I'm not that same person anymore and I'd never repeat it. I did learn that a poly relationship definitely suits me better than a monogamous relationship - but it can and should be done ethically and morally."
Her wife found out...
"I was in love but also young and selfish and could easily ignore that she was married/she was AGGRESSIVE in pursuing me for years (flying across states to see me, tracking me down at restaurants I would frequent, telling me she loved me and her marriage was in shambles, texting me from new numbers every time I told her to leave me alone). We started the stereotypical long-distance emotional affair that went into sexting/sexy pics. Her wife found out."
"I was young and drunk, with low self esteem and a crippling need for validation. She came onto me and I found it hard to say no. I justified it to myself as I knew their relationship was on the rocks anyway. I figured, well it's basically over. They just aren't formally broken up. They did split up a few months later. I'm not excusing it, I knew it was wrong."
"Didn't know any better. Horny stupid teens do stupid horny things. Wouldn't happen nowadays."
Oh the things we do for a hot roll in the hay. Be better people.