Parents Reveal The Most Messed-Up Secrets They're Hiding From Their Children

Parents are supposed to protect their children from the dangers of the world, but sometimes it's not strangers or bullies parents need to shield their kids from: it's secrets.

On Reddit, parents revealed what secrets they have never told their children. Some secrets are understandable, like why one parent never takes their child to see their grandfather. Others, like the reason why a child's dad doesn't live at home, feel like a secret time will inevitably reveal. Unlike secrets teens kept from their parents, these hidden pieces of information aren't lighthearted - they could seriously mess up their kids. 

Photo: Big Little Lies/HBO

  • They Weren't Visiting Dad 'At Work'

    From Redditor /u/katiesaid:

    That we weren't actually visiting daddy at "his work."

    It's a secure psychiatric ward where he's been since she was 3 months old.

  • Their Daughter Doesn't Know Why Her Grandparents Are Divorcing

    From Redditor /u/nilikon:

    My daughter knows that her grandparents are getting a divorce. She doesn’t know that it’s because Grandpa (72) decided to knock up a 23-year-old. We will talk about it once she’s older, but I don’t want to normalize that relationship for a preadolescent.

    This is my father-in-law, he’s definitely not rich, in fairly impressive shape for a dude pulling Social Security, and I am happily ignorant as to the status of his [performance.] It’s a small-town story with a [messed-up] single mom and an old man [who] hasn’t experienced much emotional growth since being drafted for service in Vietnam. These people would never end up together if they were emotionally healthy and didn’t have control issues.

    I am definitely going to do my best to explain to my daughter, but she’s 9 and emotionally overwhelmed by the very idea of the divorce. When she comes to me to talk about it (having processed the idea), I will explain the situation more fully. My husband has already told his dad that our family and his new family won’t be getting together for a barbecue any time in the foreseeable future.

  • Their Ex Tried To Take Their Child Away

    From Redditor /u/IlatzimepAho

    That my ex tried to take him away from me.

    When he was younger (around 2), she tried to move him out of the state and it turned into a huge custody battle (and a whole bunch of subsequent fights). She wanted to take him despite me being involved in everything. For a little while after he would talk about them wanting to move but then they decided not to.

    I’m sure I’ll tell him someday when he’s older, but for now it all has to be kept quiet.

  • Their Kids' Biological Parents Are Half-Siblings

    From Redditor /u/Tippett17:

    [I'm an] adoptive parent of three kids, and two are biological siblings and cousins. [I] found out a year after the adoption that the biological parents were half-siblings who shared the same dad. The [biological] parents found out after they had the first child and proceeded to have another.

    The kids are now 16 and 13, respectively, and have zero clue that they are a product of [familial relations.] Unfortunately their biological grandpa just passed, so there very well could be a big reveal coming in the near future.

  • There's A Reason Their Daughter Wants To Be A Pilot

    From Redditor /u/Thr33wolfmoon:

    My daughter was conceived at work, on airport property, in the back of a f*cking Ford Focus, while we were waiting for a medflight to land.

    She knows nothing about this but tells me she wants to be a pilot when she grows up.

  • Their Kids Don't Know How Their Grandpa Really Perished

    From Redditor /u/RennTibbles:

    That my dad [ended his own life] and I found the body. They have an amazing life and I don't want them to dwell on the fact that something so dark could happen to someone so close to them. They're 8 and 11, and I have no plans to tell them until maybe their 20s.

    When they ask, I just say he was very sick. When they press for details, which they have, I come right out and say, "I'd rather not talk about it. Maybe when you're older."