45 People Share The Most Unhinged Family Secrets They Unexpectedly Discovered

Some things are better kept private, and if you’re like most people, you probably have five riveting secrets stashed away somewhere that you never told a single soul. However, they can’t be hidden forever, and it’s just a matter of time before the skeletons in the closet are discovered. 

People in this online thread were discussing the said discoveries, only this time they were found among their family members, who kept them successfully concealed for quite a few years. From unknown kidnappings to lost twins, these juicy stories give telenovelas a run for their money. To uncover them, all you have to do is scroll down!

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My dad had an affair after 40 years of marriage and my parents broke up – to be fair I understood why, my mum was very aggressive toward him and it was hard to be around even as adults. What was tough was my mum made sure everyone knew he was the ‘bad guy’ and he lost friends, etc. but, years later when I wanted to get dna tests for my mum, brother and I for fun to see our family tree my mum broke down crying and begged me not to get the tests. I asked my dad about it and he broke down crying in a restaurant (never really seen him cry before) and he told me that when I was conceived my mum had also been caught having an affair with her boss – so there was a chance I was not my dads child. He never mentioned it even when mum was going nuts about his affair. My dad is 80 now and we decided to get a paternity test so he could know before he passes and the cool news is that I am his biological daughter 🙂 I think I loved my dad and respected him even more after this as he raised me so lovingly I had no idea of the drama behind my existence. I realised even more what a great dad I have.

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My great aunt who lives in a tiny rural town had her little toes surgically removed to fit into a pair of shoes..?! I still have so many questions that haven’t been answered.

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A distant relative of mine was a pirate and was hanged for smuggling in the Carribbean.

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20 years after his death we found out my grandfather had been quite a senior scientist on the ‘Tube Alloys’ project to develop a British nuclear bomb. No one in the family even knew he had any scientific qualifications. He owned and operated several successful butchers shops until his retirement. We found out when nan passed 20 years later and we found his papers.

Man took the Official Secrets Act seriously!

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Only found out recently that my biological grandfather was in a mental institution with schizophrenia. He thought he was God.

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My mum has a big old grandfather clock in her living room with wierd white bits inbedded in it. She didn’t tell me for years that one of my relatives unalived themselves with a 12b shotgun and that it was bits of said relative’s skull in the clock.

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My grandad died maybe 15 years ago now. We knew he was adopted but that was about it, no idea about his birth family or any of that, trail was cold. Not long after he died the family was contacted by someone claiming to be his birth brother who had been tracking him down, we thought it was phoney but when we saw pictures of the guy the resemblance was uncanny.
He really wanted to meet his brother, he was unaware he was a week late as he had just died. Anyway we arrange to meet not only him but the entire birth family including my great grandmother who was celebrating her 90th.
Apparently she gave birth to him very young and out of wedlock so she was forced to give him up for adoption.
We knew for decades my grandad was adopted and to meet them all at once was bittersweet; great to finally find them but sucks my grandad died like literally a week before.

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We discovered, shortly before her death, that my Nana worked with Alan Turing on the “Enigma” code-breaking during the war. She didn’t have a particularly influential role in the actual code-breaking itself, she mainly worked on intercepting the Enigma codes and passing them on to Turing and his team. But yeah, she knew him and worked directly alongside him on a daily basis.

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This all came about because we were going through her old paperwork etc, because she was poorly at the time and was moving into a smaller place, and we found some old ration books n’that relating to the war in some old tin boxes. She never really liked speaking about the war, and someone in the family asked her what she actually did back then.

We were all absolutely gobsmacked when she told us, even my Mum (her daughter) didn’t really know what she did. It all checked out, and there’s even a couple of old photos of the team (including Dilly Knox!) with Nana there alongside these people that I’ve had digitally restored.

Nana just didn’t think it was important. She was just doing her bit for the war effort, and said she actually felt guilty that she had what she thought was a relatively “safe” job back then.

Apart from that, I’ve got a cousin in Australia who appeared in a few episodes of Home and Away. From my Nana’s side of the fam, obviously. Ha!

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Found out at 48 I had a twin sister. Her daughter found me on social media. I had no idea she existed.

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My great grandmother set her husband on fire who was the chief of police,

apparantly he was a twat to her.

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I am British / white and have a blood disorder predominantly found in Arabs. I took a DNA test and found out that my grandad wasnt my dad’s real dad.

My grandmother ran a boarding house during the war and must have met someone, and as a result my dad was born.

There’s nobody alive to share the gossip with.

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A great uncle was a police officer in Cardiff. He was married to one of a pair of identical twins. After a decade of marriage, he ran off with the other twin.

Well, at least we know he had a type.

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My dad’s uncle blew himself up with dynamite on his front porch like 50 years ago….does that count?

My dad tells it as a funny story…that crazy uncle.

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I recently found out that my late mother sold my original Air Jordans from 1985 for $28,000 a few years ago. I kept asking her while she was alive to let me have my shoes, but she insisted that I would do something stupid like selling them. That explains the 2015 Mercedes she drove until her death.

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I was always told my grandfather was helping the sheriff of Nottingham when I was little and would visit him. Turns out he was serving life for taking a shotgun to his pregnant housekeeper, his kid of course.

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My mum was kidnapped as a child.

ETA: she’s told me I’m not allowed to say anything more than that ? but it’s not a case anyone would’ve heard of before anyone gets too curious. It was definitely a WHAT THE F**K moment for me however.

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My great uncle (my nan’s brother) was a getaway driver for a couple of bank jobs back in the 50s. Got caught and did time, but after release still drove around in a Jag, and bought my nan a nice new car every couple of years…

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My grandads brother had another family that nobody knew about until the funeral when they all turned up as well.

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My sister was born prematurely and had quite a few complications. She was in and out of hospital constantly. She needed risky surgery, emphasis on risky. Apparently it was a 20% survival rate. They went ahead with it and she later died that night. She was only 11 months old.

I was twelve years old at the time and that’s what I was told and believed for the next twenty years.

What actually happened is that she had survived the surgery and was doing really well, she could have even gone home that day. However the surgeon recommended that she stay at the hospital overnight just in case. She choked on her own vomit, simply due to lack of staff and mismanagement.


When I was 21, or so I thought I was , I was told I was actually 19 and what I believed to be my name wasn’t my name. It explained a lot of my experiences growing up, but I will never forget that day.


My uncle was (technically) a hitman. He got paid to kill someone back in the 80’s. He was released from prison at some point in the 2000’s, I forget exactly when. I got curious about it so Googled his name and what’d been done and found a nice little article about it

Dad had also gone to prison, around the same time as my uncle, for about 8 or 9 years for “iron bar and axe attacks”

Fun family.


My uncle hid a body his friend ran over ….

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My dad used to live in a cave. He was a part of a gang/subculture in the 1960s/early 70s called the Troggs. They used to squat in the show caves in Matlock Bath, and had quite a bad reputation stacked against them by the locals. There were crazy rumours spread about them, from “they have d**g fuelled orgies in the woods” to “they do black magic rituals in the caves” etc. In reality, they just did a lot of d***s. Whilst also living in caves.

One day as a kid I found a newspaper clipping of some article from the 90s called “Wild Thing!” or something, and there was a picture of a younger him with his Trogg mates down a cave. Then he told me everything and it blew my mind.

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Not my family but me and a friend found out through the ancestry website that his grandfather had a second family in the Philippines where he was frequently stationed with the army back in the day.

We kept finding an entry somebody had made on their family tree that matched his details, but we just ignored it thinking it was a coincidence. Eventually we looked at it.

What gave it away Some of his kids over there even had the same names as his kids here.

If he had chosen different names we wouldn’t have noticed and he might have got away with it!


My maternal great-Grandmother owned and ran a guest house in a fishing port that my Granddad grew up in. A few weeks before he died he told me (amongst other things) that it had actually been a popular brothel.

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My Mum dated a serial killer before he was known to be one. She didn’t tell me about this until a few years ago, when the man in question was being mentioned in the news again.


I heard an answer phone message while my parents were away letting Mum know that ‘Taff had passed away in the night’. I’d never heard of Taff, and I thought I knew most of my mum’s friends. Turns out Mum had a half-brother who I had never met or been told about. Grandad got someone pregnant as a teenager, and so they had to marry and raise the kid, even though neither of them wanted to. They divorced when Taff was 18, and Grandad married my Gran pretty quickly after. The age gap between my mum and Taff is a good 20+ years, so he wasn’t a major part of her life, but it was still surprising to find out about this hidden bit of family history.

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My Granddad planned to rob a bank with his mates, but when they climbed up onto the roof, the police were already there waiting for them.


It’s not that exciting, but I found recently out I’m actually a 16th Pakistani.

My Grandfather’s mother had blue eyes and light skin and managed to pass herself off as Spanish in 1920s/30s London. Apparently she would say she had moved over as a small child, her parents would only speak English because people were funny about immigrants and forgotten how to speak Spanish. This is the story that was told my whole life. My grandfather was incredibly “tanned” so would get asked.

It only came out to the family after my Grandfather died. I often think about my great grandmother now. How she might have felt about her identity, what it would have been like for her keeping her secret from an openly racist society.

It’s a shame that we have lost any family connection to that part of the world.

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I found some letters and a diary in my grandma’s place after she passed. Apparently she used to work as maid for an important doctor (before only rich people could go to uni and become doctors) when she was 14. The man got her pregnant and then tried to convince her to abort. She refused, so he made her marry one of the family workers (my grandpa).

This was shocking since my grandparents loved each other so much and looked like a great couple, they both built a solid family and gave their children a good education.


My mum always told us that her mum (my grandmother) had died when she was 4 and that her brother was still born. Anyway, after my mum died, my dad just casually told us YEARS LATER that actually my grandmother had run off, taking her son with her and abandoned my mum when she was four, so I probably still have an uncle somewhere out there.


That my great grandfather took his own life. Shellshock from WW1 as far as anyone knows. He was a farmer so had access to guns; just walked out into a field one day and shot himself.

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I found out that when my dad met his ex-wife, she was already pregnant, so I’m not actually related to my half-sister.

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That my great-grandfather was a player, and it was an open secret in my gran’s town that several of the children at her school were his instead of their mother’s husbands.

Also, I dated the grandson of my other gran’s lost love (the one that got away). Felt a bit weird when we found out that connection. We’re still friends though.

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I was adopted as a baby. It was made clear my birth parents had had a one night stand, got pregnant, and couldnt abort because of their Catholic upbringing. They were both very poor, Irish immigrants trying to get decent work in London. I accepted this completely, they wanted a better life for me.

I contacted them at around 15, to let them know I was doing well, and what GCSEs I would be doing. They replied, and it turned out they had got back together (maybe not ever been apart) and had 2 boys together. My full biological brothers. They are living in Ireland now, and their family still is unaware of my existence.

That was a pretty rough thing to find out at 15. I have come to terms with it now at 36, with two children. They still made a sensible decision. But oof all the same.

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My great grandad was stationed in Trinidad for the airforce with his family. My grandma spent most of her childhood in Trinidad. So many interesting stories from those years including:

– My grandma had a pet mongoose
– Great grandma had an affair with another officer in the airbase, got pregnant, divorced great grandad (big deal back then). Took my grandma’s older sister with her to live with their new baby half brother & affair partner, but left my grandma behind with her dad
– Grandma nearly died because the ship she was travelling on back to London during WW2 was targeted by U-boats. The other ship travelling alongside them was sunk

Grandad grew up on a farm in WW2 so wasn’t as interesting. He did find an unexploded German bomb. Tried to open it with a hammer lmao.

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Always thought we were descended from vikings, the family name is the same as a Viking settlement/village near us, turns out grandad, who looked Italian-black hair and olive skin-was abandoned at the settlement as a newborn by Irish travellers who were passing and was named after the village. I found this out in my fifties, which was a surprise.


Not very “WTF,” but my greatgrandma, who is long dead, got my nan birth certificate redone/ falsified three times for undisclosed reasons. No one knows why, what my nan original name was (if any), and when my nan was born now.

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I’m related to Michael Ryan, the person behind the Hungerford Massacre. And also the person who sold him some of his guns (none of which used in the attack).


When i was about 13 my dad told me i had a half sister from an affair he had.I found her via facebook years later.


I joined ancestry.com years back and discovered my dad wasn’t really my biological dad. It turns out my dad was infertile so my parents went to a clinic and used a donor. They never told me.

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That my parents had divorced. I only found out after my mum died. I was already in grief and, to state the obvious, I was in utter shock when I found out after delving through various legal documents.


Got a half sister from forced adoption my mum went through.


My Nana (86) has seven siblings, one of whom is a twin, and they live 15 minutes away from here but she hasn’t seen in 60 years. She doesn’t even know if they are alive. My Nana is called Jackeline and her twin is called Jack. Real creative parents. I’ve never met them and neither has my mum.


I did a DNA test and I’m 25% German. No idea how.
Source: boredpanda.com

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