15 People Whose DNA Tests Revealed Messy Family Secrets

Over the past several years, millions of people have ordered a DNA kit from one service or another, spit into a tube, stuck it in the mail, and then gotten results that parsed not only their countries and cultures of origin, but have helped them track down previously unknown family members, too.

For some – like those who were adopted as children, for example – this has been a welcome opportunity to connect. For others, secrets that they thought would remain safely kept for eternity are now lying smack in the middle of the dinner table.

These 15 people’s DNA kits revealed some pretty messy not-so-secret-anymore secrets, and let me tell you, they’re pretty juicy!

15. He has a type.

My aunt discovered that her mother cheated on her father and she was a product of that affair, meaning she was actually only half-siblings with her 4 siblings.

The rub was that my aunt’s husband was married before he married her. The woman he was married to is the daughter of the man involved in the affair. So no one knew this, but my uncle got divorced and then married his ex-wife’s half-sister. I guess he has a type.

14. The dad never knew.

Not my story, but someone very close to me discovered that none of the ethnic background that they were expecting was present in the results. This person, whose father was deceased at the time, questioned their mother. The mother admitted that the person’s father was not biological as they believed their entire life (they were older than 40).

The mother gave the name of the biological father. My friend then found the biological father, contacted him, and then discovered that they had several 1/2 siblings. The biological father was unaware he had another child and accepted my friend into his family as did the siblings.

13. His little black book.

A woman over in Chicago decided to find out who her real parents were. She was getting close to 60 and realized that there may not be much time left to find her father. So through the magic of ancestry she was matched to my grandfather.

She reached out to him and told him who her mother was. He didn’t recognize the name but dug up his little black book and lo and behold…there she was.

So now I’ve got a new aunt!

12. He couldn’t be bothered with the paperwork.

My bio-dad left his family and two daughters in Washington and married my mom in Los Angeles 5 weeks later.

I found his first marriage certificate but nothing about a divorce.

I’m pretty sure he was a bigamist.

11. The product of (another) affair.

I found a half sister that none of my siblings or mother knew about. My dad had an affair 50 years ago (he’s dead now).

For us it wasn’t really a surprise, we already have a half-sister from another affair but for the newly discovered one it answered a lot of questions and gave her some needed closure.

We all met a few times, it was pleasant.

10. Who has the time?

My FIL was married to at least 2 women at a time. Nice guy but a man whore, and I think he just didn’t want to let each woman down when she got pregnant and/or started bringing up marriage.

My MIL says that he was already married when they got married, but we also know that he has a child 3 months younger than my husband and the woman and child both go by FIL’s last name (and that’s NOT the woman MIL claims he was married to when he married her).

So he might possibly have had 3 wives at the same time. My husband has upwards of 10 half siblings from his dad.

9. She didn’t know her own granddaughter.

My male cousin did one and found a female cousin we did not know about. He reached out to her and apparently our deceased uncle was good friends with her mother. Mom wanted a baby so uncle got her pregnant simply as a sperm donor.

Female cousin lived a few blocks away from my grandmother. She had met her a few times going around selling Girl Scout cookies or something. My grandmother had no idea that she was buying cookies from her granddaughter.

8. Making money was in their genes.

I have an uncle that was put up for adoption. He contacted my grandma and she thought he was going to extort her (they’re well off). Turns out he’s a multi, multi millionaire on his own.

They still have limited contact, though my dad has reached out and formed a relationship. Apparently they look exactly alike and have the same personality (which sounds kind of stupid now that I’m writing it out, but they’re only half-siblings).

7. Just like in Game of Thrones.

Found out I have a different father.

My dad also took a DNA test at the same time and found out his father, of 52 years, was not his biological father either.

As it turns out, I come from a line of bastards.

6. Weird is one word for it.

I found out that my dad is not my biological father.

Turns out the family friend I grew up calling ‘grandpa’ is.

Oh yea, and he was also my mom’s bariatric surgeon.

Felt weird man.

5. A reverse reveal.

On the flip side – my dad used to say my mom slept around and none of the 3 of us were his kids.

Welp, thanks to the test, we know all 3 of us are!

4. A happy ending.

I was adopted and always knew I was adopted. My parents told me that I came from a family that had already had all of their kids. They lived several towns over. I was a surprise.

Three years ago my wife decided to take some DNA tests. I figured what the heck? Maybe I’m part Zulu warrior. That’d be cool.

When the tests came back, I found out I had a first cousin. They had listed a public email. I emailed them, started comparing notes, and wham! I was in for quite a surprise.

First, I was not born into a traditional family. Instead, my bio mom was single. Second, I was not a late addition. I had four sisters and one brother. I was the baby, but only by a couple of years. Third, most all of them lived nearby. Finally, nobody knew I was alive!

My biological mom had passed. She had kept the pregnancy secret from everybody else. Before she died, she had confided in one of my bio sisters that she had a baby a long time ago, and she had put the baby up for adoption. She told nobody else.

When my sister told the rest of the family? They didn’t believe her! So when I finally looked them up, she was like “See! All those years! I told you so! We have a baby brother!”

It was an amazing experience. I had no idea what I was getting into when I sent that DNA test off.

3. Not everyone is upset.

Not me, but a friend never knew who his father was (mom had a weekend fling in college and never contacted the guy after) and his wife helped him use ancestry.com to try and track him down.

My friend reached out and the guy was obviously surprised, but flew across the country to meet him.

They have a great relationship now, the dad attended his wedding, and they try to get their families together a couple times a year or so

2. Scandalous.

My wife is adopted (but found her bio mom) and did one of the genetic tests. Someone matched with her and asked if she knew such and such a name.

She found out her bio mom’s husband wasn’t the bio dad, it was the bio mom’s boss. oops.

1. You hate to hear it.

A friend discovered that her father was not really her father.

Her mom had an affair and she was the result. It tore her family apart.

Her “father” did not know he was not really her father.

Note: she was 45 years old when this happened.

I have no idea what I would do if this happened to me, but you have to feel a little sorry for the secret keepers – I mean, they kept mum all these years only to be outed by science!

Did your family wade into messy waters after someone took a DNA test? Tell us the story in the comments!