SEPTEMBER 12, 2011 11:32AM

Open Call: My parents' secret history

Rate: 6 Flag

 At some point or another, we all learn that our parents did not in fact burst forth from their mothers' wombs as the fully formed people who raised us, but actually have their own strange and complicated pasts. We want to read your stories about discovering fascinating and surprising things about the people your parents once were.

Be sure to tag your posts "my parents' secret history." We'll feature our favorites on the cover of Open Salon, and we're hoping to cross-post a few onto Salon as well.

I've updated this Open Call to clarify what we're looking for.

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After reading Rodney Roes post on the Cowbird this morning, I think if I were to do this I would never be considered the same person that you thought you knew.
wow. i've got to say this is pretty disappointing, emily. the OS editorial management is looking for people to write "shocking" exposes about their parents' "sordid" pasts? even if the request is offset by requests for the stories that are "strange ... complicated ... (or) fascinating," i have been hoping management had stopped trying to fill the cover with tabloid junk.

about someone's parents? really??
Unfortunately you may get what you have asked for here - sad really
The "sordid" here was meant pretty lightly... The call is really more about finding out things that surprise you about your parents.
I'm not sure my parents would appreciate this....
heh heh heh.

Oh, I'm kidding.
Complicated pasts can be anything bad or good. It is quite a challenge. thanks
I would never be able to post this under Snarkychaser.
I would never be able to post this under Snarkychaser.
"The call is really more about finding out things that surprise you about your parents."

My mom is really my father and my father, well, he was my really my cousin.

True story.

Go look it up.

**Wanders off mumbling something about cheese for brains and raisins for butts**
Well, now that my dad is dead I guess it can't hurt much to reveal he was D.W. Cooper. Mom? She's dead, too, but left with a smile on her face knowing she'd gotten away with embezzling $2.3 million from Bank of America over her career as a teller. The money? I never got a nickel. My parents blew it all living their lives to the fullest.

Like this, you mean, Emily? ;-|
Matt, those are the kinds of stories that pull the Feds to Open. I'm so proud of you!!! :D
thank you for clarifying the request, emily, although i personally still have a queasy feeling about "secret" and its implication, but no matter.

it will be interesting to see if anyone reveals that they are the son/daughter of someone serving time for espionage.
I knew my parents being in the CIA would come in handy!
Funny the way so many people seem to be taking this prompt. The way I read it, the key word is "discovering," not secret identities or privacy violations but a parent's human foibles, as seen from a child's POV. But that's just me. I'm looking forward to exploring those times.
I'm skipping this one. I have a story to tell, but if I told it while one of my parents were still alive, I'd be a rotten son.
1. This is not an inquisition (at least, presumably--no one has shown up on my doorstep yet). Presuming you're a rational, mature adult, you can decide what you want to write (or leave out) about your own family. Folks, this is the nature of creative narrative.

2. No one is forcing you to write on this topic, and no penalties apply if you don't.

3. While replies could be interesting, I'd much prefer less "dear diary" style prompts in favor of prompts that are relevant to something happening in the world.
My dad's story is jaw-dropping, and I almost never heard it. I hope you'll read.
Which parents? Biological, adopted, surrogate, influential...list goes on and on.