People From Around The World Share The Secrets They Keep From Their Parents

People From Around The World Share The Secrets They Keep From Their Parents

No matter how good your relationship with your parents is, you just can't tell them everything. And if your relationship with your parents is rocky to begin with, you sometimes end up feeling like you can't tell them anything.

From sweet and relatable to dark and unfortunate, these folks recently went online to share the secrets that they will never tell their parents as long as they live. Take it to the grave.

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35. And a happy new year

I accidentally burned our house down when I was a kid. It was a couple weeks after Christmas and we still had our tree and it was extremely dry. My mom was sleeping on the couch and I grabbed a candle from the kitchen and put it to the tree, which went up like a tinderbox and burned the house down. It wasn't malicious or anything, just a dumb little kid wanting to see what would happen. Everyone got out safe and we lived with my aunt for a while.

To this day, no one knows it was me.

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34. Dad takes the fall

When I was around 14, I overheard my parents arguing. My mom was yelling at my dad about some suspicious searches on the computer. It was really me that was going on the computer in their room and watching... adult content, let's say. He kept denying it and she kept calling him a liar. He slept in the guest bedroom for a month after that fight.

He knew it wasn’t him, but I also have two other brothers. For all he knew it could have been one of them. He never said anything to any of us as far as I know.

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33. I hope it was a really good movie...

I recorded the movie Gundam Wing: Endless Waltz over my sister's high school graduation video. It's been about 18 years, but I still feel bad.

The messed up thing is: my buddy bought me the movie for my birthday before I even had a chance to watch the copy on tape.

The video of her graduation also had footage of the graduation party - many of the attendees have now passed away. I would give a lot to watch it.

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32. A nice lighthearted one

My mother is incredibly militant we never use "The big light" in the front room, we must only ever use lamps. To the point where she took the bulb out of it and for years we haven't had one in there.

Well last time they went away on holiday I put a bulb in there and she still hasn't noticed.

I never use the big light, but I could, I could...

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31. Future cat lady coming through

This is going to sound REALLY stupid, but I have always been hiding the fact that I do want a relationship/family one day.

It started out with being young and finding that kind of stuff awkward so I never showed any interest in boys. But now I'm in my early 20s, I still keep quiet about it because I don't want my mother to think that I'm sad about missing out on relationships, because that would make HER sad.

I have always suffered from very severe social anxiety, and depression for years, so I don't see myself ever having a relationship. I'd rather have her believe I'm immature/asexual than for her to think I feel lonely and sad. It's the weirdest secret ever, I know. Then again, expressing my desire to become a crazy cat lady instead of having a family isn't THAT much of a lie. I just leave out the part that I wanna be a crazy cat lady WITH a family.

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30. That's a good boyfriend for you

That my now-husband supported both of us completely while I was in med school (we were only dating 1 year when this arrangement started, we got married 2 weeks after graduation). My parents think I took out loans to cover rent, books, food, etc... but the husband and I had a serious conversation about it and he made enough money to support both of us without more loans.

They'd be disappointed because they always wanted me to be independent, but it worked out in the end for us.

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29. When you can't just 'agree to disagree'

That I'm an atheist.

Living in the south, they're both extremely conservative, highly religious people. My dad has actually recently become a pastor. I was raised in church and sent to a private Christian school. It kills me to spend time with them because the only thing they seem to be able to talk about is church gossip.

They're the kind of people that make personal choices like this about themselves. I don't think they have any idea, and if they were to ever find out, I don't think I would ever hear the end of how they believe that they failed as parents. I think they would just spend the rest of their lives trying to "fix" me.

So, I just avoid speaking to them as much as possible. It's sad, really.

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28. Hands up if you did this too!

About 90% of the booze bottles in their house are filled with water or iced tea, because in high school I'd empty them out, refill the bottle with a liquid similar in color, and then drink the contents myself.

My parents always had a lot of bottles around because my dad tends to receive it as gifts (he's a manager at a collections agency; the repo guys he contracts out to always send him drinks around Christmastime). Neither of my parents actually drink anything harder than a couple brews, though, so to this day, 15 years later, they're none the wiser.

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27. The jet set

One day I was around 12 or 13 and swimming in our pool. We had a secluded backyard and nudity wasn't a big deal in our house so I wasn't wearing a suit. Also because it feels better so screw it.

Well, at that age it doesn't take much to make the arrow point north if you will, so as I walked by the jet it flapped my member to and fro. It felt great, so I continued until... the inevitable conclusion. About a minute later, my mom and dad come out and go in the pool. So yeah... my mom and dad swam in my...stuff . I'll keep that one to myself if I live 1,000 years.

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26. That says... so much about their marriage

I had partied a little too hard as a teenager and  got home to find my parents arguing. Naturally, as I was pinging off the walls, I gave a massive motivational speech to both my parents (who I'm not massively close to) on why they should not get a divorce, and should do everything they can to keep the family together.

They still bring up how they think that intervention is what kept their marriage going. The secret is I think them get a divorce would actually probably be a good idea, but have no idea how I would go back on what I said.

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25. Childhood is not a debt

I make more money than I let on. My parents have and will always be the "I take care of you all your life, time for you to pay it back" type of parent. Except there is no end to this "debt". So I hide money from them so they can't take advantage of me.

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24. A mountain out of a molehill

I keep meeting guys at board game events to see if they click. They're nice dudes and fun to hang out with, but I don't see relationship potential happening for several months, if at all.

I wish I could tell my folks this, but every time I so much as hint at meeting a guy, my mom pounces on me with "Is he cute/does he like you/do you like him/did you kiss?" This is the same person who, when I was dating a guy a few years ago, asked if I was in love after the second date.

Let's just totally forgo having compatibility and common interests; being "just friends" is always grounds for "But there could be romance!"

She's so quick to pounce on the "But do you like him?" train.

And if I did end up dating these guys, the next question would be "So, when are you getting married?"

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23. No one wants to bury their child

I can't tell my parents I have stage 4 terminal breast cancer. I just turned 40 and am the youngest of their three children.

My parents are in their late 70s / early 80s with plenty of their own health problems. Worrying about me would serve no purpose. Lying to them sucks though.

My husband, my sister (I have breast cancer so I had her go get checked right away - she's thankfully cancer-free), and a few friends know.

My cancer is currently NED (no evidence of disease). Yay! I can't use remission as I have stage 4 and it will inevitably come back. I'm just considered cancer-free between PET scans.

By the grace of science I've been NED for almost 3 years. But holly molly the medicine side effects are brutal.

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22. Children raising parents

I'm not buying a house or getting married because I know my mom's secret is that she's been paying into a pyramid scheme and is so broke she can barely function. I'm saving money to bail her out when her house caves in /burns down (any day now) or she develops a major health issue. She'd be furious if she knew because she'll see it as an insult, me trying to shame her and suggest she's incompetent.

My mother and I have talked (not calmly) about her situation, and it's taken me 15 years to learn not to scream back.

I am not currently supporting my mother in any way other than emotionally, and that's just barely. I simply have an emergency fund (liquid) for when the house collapses or she falls ill (both very real and scary as she has no safety net) because I won't leave my mother homeless or dying without care (even if she hates me for it). She wouldn't see this as love and concern, but as condescension and judgement, so that's the big secret.

I have been working with financial planners to help me find the best balance and risk for my wealth. If she never needs my emergency fund, then I retire early. Or buy a house for cash. Or walk the length of the Americas.

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21. The cycle stops here

I’m bisexual, was bicurious is high school. My parents would disown me if they ever knew, because they’re very... well, not down with equality, let's say. They say the reason one of my uncles got colon cancer was because of his homosexuality. Only my wife and my closest friends know about my secret.

When my kid grows up, I don’t care what his orientation is, I’ll support and love him no matter what.

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20. Private lives should be private

That I have a girlfriend.

Seriously: eastern parents will eat that shit right up and want to know everything like what her dad does for a living and his social security number and how old her mom is or some other obscene questions.

I love my parents and my girlfriend, so I believe it would be in the best of interests to keep things secret for now.

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19. No love lost

The secret I'm keeping from my parents is that I don't love them. I care about them in the way I care for a hurt stranger but I won't be crying when they die except for over the stress of handling the funerals and finding a place for their minor children and animals to live.

They ran debts in my name and never helped me out -- for example I was homeless twice in my mid 20s but I couldn't stay with them apparently. At 18 I still didn't have a license because I couldn't borrow their car. Eventually saved up and paid for lessons. Not that I could afford a car until a few years later.

At 20, I had a job interview at a well paying company. I asked my parents if they could drive me an hour to get there. They agreed but the day of the interview they never showed up. Obviously I lost out on the job.

They wrecked my ability  to get a job again when I lived with them from 16-22 by going off almost every week, leaving me with the other kids and animals.

They've never been there for me and they've used me time and again. But it's honestly not worth it to confront them.

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18. Meet me new girlfriend... quickly

I just started paying escorts to show up to family functions as my 'girlfriend' of the week so that my parents would stop telling their friends to hook me up with their daughters. Every gathering these fine young ladies would show up, meet everyone, and always magically have to leave early.

I pay by hour.

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17. You do you

That I’m not going to finish my degree and I’ve paid off my student loans. My degree was pointless and I don’t do well in school due to my ADHD. My dad constantly asks when I’m going to finish and stop bartending; I just say 'soon.' I hate disappointing them because my dad gets very proud of my sister and I with our accomplishments... but truth be told, I’m quite content with the 60k I make bartending. Working in my field of study would only star me out at 35k a year.

I don’t need to pull in 6 figures. I’m content with where I’m at. I live comfortably, travel 2-3 times a year, and I even just recently payed off my car.

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16. She's been planning this since you were... In Utero

My mom told me I was too young to go to a concert and wouldn't let me see Nirvana. To this day every time they come up in the news (the most recent being what would have been Kurt Cobain's 50th), she mentions how bad she feels about making me miss that show, knowing now that there wouldn't be any other chances. This has been going on basically since he died (which was not long after the show).

So either she legitimately doesn't know I went anyways while sleeping over my best friend's house.

...Or she does know and has been low key trolling me for 25 years.

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15. A lifetime in the closet

My parents divorced when I was eight. My dad left, and I never saw much of him. Among other issues, he came out to my brother and I before they divorced. I never told my mother that he was gay. My father passed in 2011, my mother in 2017. I think she had an idea, but we never discussed it. He was born in 1945, before such a thing was accepted, and attempted at 'passing.'

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14. That cop must have been really bad at his job...

I was locked out of my house one day after school. I was about 14. I went to the side garage door and kicked the door in, breaking the frame. I was dumb and didn't expect anything to break and didn't know how to fix it so I just left it.

My dad found it and assumed someone broke in and called the cops. A squad car came by and the officer looked around. He shined his flashlight at an angle on the door and found a shoe print. MY SHOE PRINT. I was freaking right out, sweating buckets, but I kept my mouth shut because I was more afraid of my dad getting angry than the cop.

Since nothing was found to be stolen, nothing ever happened. But I've never told my dad I was the one who broke in.

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13. Two family secrets for the price of one

When I was in the 7th grade I started to get into adult stuff online and my favorite, for some reason, was guy-on-guy stuff even though I’m a girl. Anyways, I didn’t know how anything but YouTube worked so I ended up downloading like 3 guy videos on my phone. I had an Android so when I deleted the videos the download history was still in my phone.

For some reason my mom took my phone and went through it and sat me down and asked me about the stuff she had found on it. But for some more context I had to keep my phone in the living room at night and could only have it during the day.

Now I’m not proud of this but I’m a good liar. In this situation I didn’t have to do much lying because as soon as I started crying and saying I didn’t do it she immediately believed me and blamed it on my step-dad, saying that she had a suspicion that he was gay through their whole relationship and all that.

After that she never confronted him and just continued to stay with him even though she thought he was gay. That’s when I realized my mom was a gold digger.

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12. How dare you take care of your body?!

The fact that I work out, hard and heavy.

My Mom thinks that muscles on girls are gross, and for the years that she knew I worked out she treated me like I was gross too. It was heartbreaking for me. So now I pretend that I lost interest in lifting weights and I'm much happier this way. The true fact is that I gave it up for 2 months but couldn't stand life without it.

It's sad that I can't keep my Mom in the loop of my most loved passion, but I've accepted it

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11. Well, that was a freebie!

Once I was messing around in my room with a short workout chain, swinging it around like that motorcycle game on Sega. Road Rash I think it was. Anyway, I hit my bedroom door and put a very obvious chain shaped hole right in the middle. Covered up that crap with a car poster cause future me can suck it. It's his problem.

About a year later, my dad was super angry at me about something and punched my door, putting his hand right through the poster.

After an initial moment of panic, my teenager instincts kicked in and I just said, "Dad! You punched a hole in my door!" He apologized and I got away with it scot-free!

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10. I really hope they went to jail

I've been urinary incontinent for 5 years and have to wear adult diapers.

I had the absolute crap kicked out of me for showing someone up in front of some girl he was trying to impress (pretty much harassing her, he wouldn't get the message), got jumped by him and his friends a few days later, leaving me with spinal damage.

I'm actually quite comfortable with the whole thing and joke about it with friends often, but it's just something that I don't want my family knowing about.

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9. Hit and sleep

At 17, my buddies and I partied a little too hard and on the drive home (I wasn't driving, but driver had had a few too many drinks) hit my mom's car in the driveway. I woke up to really angry screams in the am and didn't tell her I knew who did it. She assumed it was a hit and run.

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8. If you want a relationship with your kids...

I'm gay. My entire life is hidden from my parents (they're the ultra-conservative types). They think I'm some lonely person whose never had a girlfriend who leaves work and goes home to play on his computer all night.

In reality I have a pretty thriving social life, I manage to safe enough to take one or two small (and cheap) trips a year. I've dated a lot of great guys, none of whom they ever met except for one, although they have no clue he and I dated, they just thought he was a friend of mine.

Parents, if you want a close relationship with your kids, don't shame them for being gay, they had no choice in the matter despite what your church tells you.

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7. Not just a theory, a real conspiracy

I refuse to tell my mum that I caused her and my dad to get a divorce.

I love my mum dearly, but my dad was something straight out of the 1940s. He never used to let her go out, detested the idea of both me and her working because "women don't do that." Overtly racist and hit mum all the time when she tried to stand up for herself.

My girlfriend at the time was into all the party substances, so I asked her to buy me some heavy stuff from her dealer (no idea what it was). We were going on holiday in a few days, so just before we headed out, I put some of it in his case and left the rest in his nightstand.

He was caught at the airport, arrested, house got searched, so they found more of it. My mum comes clean about the abuse and breaks down during the questioning. Filed for divorce, dad got jail time, mum got custody of me.

It did break her heart, but she found someone else. I have not seen my dad for about 11 years now. Last I heard he was out, but other than that, I couldn't care less. My mum is so much happier, went to study and is now a trainee vet -- her dream job my dad wouldn't let her do.

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6. One last gift

My father died the day after Valentine's Day. On Valentine's Day "he" gave my mom a new bracelet, however my sister and I had bought it for my mother the day before and gave it to my dad to give to her because we knew my dad would forget to buy her something because he is a knucklehead. Then the next day he had a massive heart attack and passed away. Now my mom never takes off the bracelet because it was the last gift he ever gave to her.

Apparently my dad also never gave my mom jewelry as gifts, so it was even more special to her now.

My sister and I have vowed to take this information to the grave.

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5. Maury Povich

I met the guy my mom told me was my real father. We did a DNA test and there is a 0% chance. He even took me on a white water rafting trip with his wife and son. I’ve never told her.

I’m not upset by it or super keen on finding my biological dad, as I have a dad who raised me (who also doesn’t know I did this). It was more of a curiosity thing and he wanted to know if he had another kid. I’m more curious cause I would wanna know backgrounds or if there is any illness I could be prone too.

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4. The secret nap room

I'm not trying to hide it but I'm not going to just tell them out of nowhere but I used to skip like half my classes my senior year of high school and slept in a secret room in the school.

Well, it wasn't that hidden. Nearly every guy has seen the door but no one goes in. In the room where we keep all the chairs, tables and mats for events in the gym there is also a ladder which leads to a room. Every assumes it's locked. It is not locked.

So nearly every day before school I would go behind the school to where the weight room is which is connected to the gym, pass that and immediately go under the bleachers so the teacher wouldn't spot me, come out the other side next to the room where we keep all the chairs, go in that room, climb the ladder, get in the room and go to sleep till lunch.

Then I would usually go out the same way and go to McDonalds or something and go home because I only had classes till lunch. My gf, at the time, is a school-aholic and would keep me up to date on test days. I would read the material once or twice, take the test and usually pass and graduated with all C's.

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3. This is what happens when you do the right thing

I told my mom I quit my last job because they didn't accommodate my school schedule. That's not what happened.

Here's what really happened:

I reported someone for fraud. You know when you call somewhere to order something over the phone and you give the customer service representative your information? This guy was recording you talking and selling your credit card info online. I stopped that - he was dumb enough to tell me he was doing it.

But, I worked in a "no snitching" kind of atmosphere. Very unprofessional (I could go on, but I'll leave it at that). So I didn't trust anyone I worked with on a regular basis to keep this a secret, not my supervisor, my manager, nothing. I emailed the company security team with proof (texts the fraudster texted me). He was immediately fired.

My supervisor knew someone who worked in security. They were very chummy. He ended up telling my entire team it was me out "ratted out" the fraudster. I explained the entire situation to his manager, the fraud, my reporting it, my supervisor's immature reaction. The manager set right to it - she was going to get him removed from our location and, upon my request, transfer me to a position of equal pay.

Her mom gets cancer and she has to take a leave. Another friend of my supervisor takes over her position the day after I'm transferred teams. My supervisor and him talk - the next day I'm in a position making $2/h less.

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2. Two strikes

My mum doesn't know I've been arrested twice, one time with my dad

First time was on a night out in Central London with bunch of my friends, stepped out of the club for a second to grab some cash, then bouncers refused to let me in until I got some water from the shop across the road. Did that and they refused me, told me to have more water, then still wouldn't let me in. So spent the rest of the night arguing with bouncers and getting carried out after running in whilst they were distracted.

Was adamant about getting my £10 entry fee back. Ended up having an argument with the manager until I got the money, then as I was walking away Police were blocking me. Tried pushing them out the way cos I was desperate for a kebab at that point, ended up getting taken to the station and was in a cell for a night and hit with an £80 fine.

Second time was out with my dad after going to the football game and having some drinks. Late in the night, we were in a pub with a narrow corridor at the entrance, and whilst my dad was there texting his missus, some fella bumped into him and started on him, so I waded in to break it up and the 3 of us spilled into the street.

I ended up getting cuffed in the middle of the road and carted off to the station. My old man was dragged in behind me whilst I was getting processed. Next morning a copper (who actually went to school with my dad) had to ring my grandma to pick us up. She was worried and asked them if they knew where I was, and got a bit of a shock when they said I was there as well. Luckily the incident was caught on CCTV so no fine that time.

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1. Too much information

My dad is cheating on my mom. I have horrible sleeping patterns but people think I’m asleep just because when I lay down for too long my mouth just opens and when I close my eyes it looks like I sleep, I’ve been hearing my dad calling another woman every single night

My mom steals money from my dad and from me and my brother and bad mouths my dad a lot of time knowing I’m not good with confrontation and I’m very sensitive. At night I can hear them arguing and in the morning they act like everything's great, They bad mouth me and my brothers and talk about wanting a divorce, Not wanting me and my brother, the cats and hating each other pointing out sensitive things and hitting each other

It started messing with my head a lot for the past couple years and had changed my reputation in school a lot. My friends told me I wasn’t the same because I used to let them borrow all my things, follow them around and wanted to be near them and would hug them a lot. They told me I was not hugging them at all, distancing myself, my grades got horrible and always asked them to be left alone, I’ve lost a lot of friends and teacher’s who talked to me I would open up but they always said problems at home stay at home, don’t bring it to school.

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Cries at 30,000 Feet


During my teenage years, I had a unique experience that I will never forget. I was 15, and my parents and I were on a flight for a much-needed vacation. As we were getting settled in our seats, a heart-wrenching scene caught my eye. A boy, probably around 10, sitting alone and crying. Maybe it was my youthful naivety or my empathetic nature, but I felt compelled to keep him company. We talked, played, and passed the entire 12-hour flight together, his teary eyes slowly replaced with giggles and laughter.

As we landed, he sprinted towards his awaiting family. Their joyful reunion soon turned teary, as he started wailing, clutching his parents. My mom, curious, asked why he was crying again. Nonchalantly, I shrugged, telling them, 'Probably because he missed his parents.' They accepted my innocent explanation. Little did they know, behind those 12 hours of innocent games and laughter, lay a diabolical truth. The boy, a victim of a vicious custody battle, was being taken away from his mother, who he loved dearly, to live with a father he barely knew. His tears were not of relief, but of dread for the life that awaited him. I was a mere teenager, but that flight taught me more about the complexities of human emotions and the cruel side of life than any book or class ever could.

The Hidden Benevolence


Every time my grandparents hit town, their first stop was always my apartment. With concern written all over their faces, they would move through my pantry and freezer, restocking it with canned goods and frozen entrees. It felt like a grocery store, with everything stacked and organized just like they would have done at their own house. I told them time and time again that while I appreciated their generosity, it was unnecessary and I didn't really need all that. But, like old trees deeply rooted into the earth, they were immovable. They feared me going hungry due to my pride, and they wouldn't risk it.

After their departure, my apartment would morph into an impromptu donation center. I moved out everything they had brought, packing each item carefully into cartons. The canned goods, the frozen entrees, all were transported to a local food bank. Why, you might ask? Well, here's the truth that would knock the winds out of their pipe. You see, I've been donating all the stuff they leave behind in their name. Each time they visit, they unknowingly feed dozens of hungry families and bring smiles to people they've never met. It's their love and concern, transferred to those who need it the most.