Wouldja Like to Meet My Insomniac Atheist Bisexual Vampire Son?

Influence Insomnia by Erika LeBarre
So then…he takes a bite of a fresh-baked cookie and says with a sigh, “I’m probably so tired today because I’m an insomniac.”

He’s 11.

I stop scooping dough onto the cookie sheet and look at him with furrowed brow.

“You’re an insomniac? When did that happen?” I ask.

He plops on the kitchen chair and says in a world-weary voice, “Oh, I’ve been an insomniac for years.”

Again, he’s 11.

“Really, Tucker? Because I check on you kids every night before I go to bed – and whenever I go into your room – you’re dead asleep. Even at midnight or 1 or 2 in the morning.”

“Oh, I’m awake when you check on me,” he assures me.

“You’re eyes are closed and you’re snoring.

“So? I can snore when I’m awake. Listen – shjrooor shjrooor.”

“Tucker,” I say. “You are not an insomniac! You sleep fine. What makes you think you are?”

“Well, I was talking to this kid in band class and he was telling me that he has insomnia because he can’t sleep at night and I realized that I have that too.”

OK, I see.

Several months later…

So then…we’re saying Grace before dinner but Tucker doesn’t join in. I ask him, “What’s up?”

He says, “Oh, I don’t say Grace anymore because I’m an atheist.”

Influence Atheist
He calmly eats his corn. I seethe.

I want to say, “Really Tucker? You’re an atheist? Even though you had a Baptism and Reconciliation and First Holy Communion AND you go to Catholic school? We may not attend Mass on Sundays – and we may not be super religious — but this is a God-loving, Commandments-abiding, Bible-believing family for Christ’s sake, you insufferable little heathen!

But I realize that may not be the best speech to bring him back to the Lord.

So I casually ask when this new development occurred.

“There’s this girl in class who told us that she’s atheist and I realized I am too.”

OK, I see.

“So you think we’re all just here randomly? There’s no God or higher power?” I ask.

“Oh, I believe in God. I just don’t believe in religion,” he says.

“So maybe you’re agnostic?”

He scoops up the rest of his corn with his fork and thumb. “Yeah, OK.”

OK, at least I’ve upgraded him from atheist to agnostic for now. I’ll tackle religion next.

About a year later…

So then…he comes in the kitchen, puts his script on the table, sits down, and says, “I’m pretty sure that I’m bisexual.”


Influence Bisexual
I keep cleaning the counters and ask, “Really? What makes you think that?”

“Well, you know the play this summer at acting class is Cabaret, right? Well, some of the characters are bisexual – and some of the teenagers in the cast were saying at lunch that they’re bisexual. And I realized that I am too.”

OK, I see.

I sit down with him. “Tucker, you know I’ll love you and accept you, no matter what — so if you’re bisexual, then you’re bisexual. But let’s talk about this for a minute. First of all, you haven’t had any sexual experiences yet, so let’s not be so quick to label yourself bisexual, mono-sexual, tri-sexual or multi-sexual, ok? Secondly, do you have romantic feelings for any boys?”

“Oh yeah, lots of boys.”

“Really, like who?” I ask.

“I can’t think of anyone right now,” he says in that same tone of voice he uses to say that he could hit a homerun if he wanted to, but he just doesn’t feel like it right now.

So I say, “Well, you’ve been pretty open about everyone you’ve ever had a crush on since kindergarten all the way until now — and it’s always been girls.”

So we have a long talk about peer pressure, fitting in with the crowd, making rash pronouncements about identity, etc. It’s a great talk, but I don’t push. I know that this new alleged identity trait will eventually go the same way as his other announcements.

BUT MEANWHILE, I’m thinking to myself, Good Lord, do I have THE most easily-influenced child in the world?

At the future frat party, when someone says, “Hey, who wants to down 4 Tequila shots, then ride this skateboard off the roof into that pool of hot coeds?” – will my son be the kid who thinks, “That sounds like a splendid idea!”?

Yes. Yes, he will.

I can’t believe he is so impressionable.

What’s next?

“I just watched a great episode of Psych – by the way, I’m psychic.”

“This German Chocolate Cake is delicious! Those Germans really know how to bake. I’m joining the Nazi Party!”

Influence Vampire Eric Allie
“I saw that Twilight movie. Great news, Mom, I am IMMORTAL. Also — can we have blood for dinner?”

Let’s hope not — but with my kid…I wouldn’t be surprised!

— Darcy Perdu

Insomnia Illustration by Erika LeBarre; Vampire Illustration by Eric Allie

(Please let me know I’m not the ONLY one with a highly impressionable child! Any examples to share from your kids – or from when YOU were a kid? Share them in the Comments Section!)

My Insomniac Atheist Bisexual Vampire Son P Small

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30 replies on “Wouldja Like to Meet My Insomniac Atheist Bisexual Vampire Son?

  1. Meredith said:

    That’s HYSTERICAL!

  2. Nail Biting Mom said:

    You have described my son. At age 5, because we were sort of non religious at the time, he created his own deity called “The World.” At that point, I broke down and told him all about God, Jesus, and etc. Now at 14 he’s an Atheist. “Because you know, I just don’t believe all of that, right?” At 9 he wanted to cross dress for the Halloween parade. His father said no because “you’ll get the crap beat out of you.” At 12 he dreamed he made out with another guy, pronounced himself gay, and then challenged the extremely conservative kids (we live in a very conservative state that is redder than red) about gay rights. It’s our fault. We’re screaming liberals. He’s a ballet dancer – a real one (like a 20 hours per week at the barre in a real academy associated with a real ballet company) and we are tree-hugging democrats who talk about Gay rights and Occupy Wall street and stuff. And we didn’t prepare him to NOT say stuff like that to his very Mormon 8th grade pals. Now he’s sporting some cute girlfriend and refusing to go to the church we joined so that he could have some religious identity. But overall, so far so good. I don’t care if he’s atheist or bisexual (we did that phase too). I hope he doesn’t get to the vampire stage. But who the hell knows, right? I don’t care if he ends up as a conservative republican. As long has he still hugs my neck – which he continues to do as long as no one is watching.

    • LOL — and so adorable that he still hugs your neck! Love it!

  3. My son Nick fell victim to College Fairs and Armed Forces marketing campaigns in his junior year of high school. For each of the 180 days in that school year, he chose twice as many careers (they ranged, alphabetically, from Army-Sniper to Zoo Management).

    When he finally asked for my help his senior-year, I let my fingers-do-the-walking through a collection of ‘quotes’ I’d collected, of things my kids said over the years. My thinking was this child’s extra-lengthy section might lend insights into his aptitude and interests. For example: “Mom, what’s a ‘kosh’?”
    “I dunno, spell it.”
    “You know. Like when you throw ‘kosh’ into the wind.” Like that. Then Nick and I could ponder a career like, ‘linguistics’ or ‘meteorology.’

    Our process yielded some provocative concepts like Comparative-Religion & NBA-Star Double Major. Then it took a u-turn toward the macabre and illegal: competitive violent-slam poet, film noir critic, assassin.

    He ended up majoring in English and spent years as a successfully-touring musician, but he currently writes corporate contracts and has a brilliant new wife and life in Ontario.

    How ‘normal’ became an option after his impressionism-phase is mysterious. But probably a harbinger of success!

    Full story at
    carolyn given recently posted..“A thing of joy is a beauty forever” –The 2013 NGLO Ontario LOVE PARTY REVIEWMy Profile

  4. You should start talking about yourself around him… or pay his friends to say they like/are certain things.

    “I’m a total neat freak. I love cleaning my room.”

    “I hate candy or really anything sweet. I only eat veggies all day every day.”

    You could spin this to your advantage, you know?
    Cara Lyn Erickson recently posted..How to Deal: Our Marriage’s Most Common Fights – Part 1My Profile

  5. Cracked up at his future frat party experience! ;) That is hilarious! It sounds like he is just open-minded, which I give him credit for! :)-Ashley

  6. This is just too funny for words. But I can empathize…though, my daughter is the complete opposite of your son. She makes it a point to go against the tide. Sometimes it is just her stubborn pride. Well, most of the time. But we can’t tell them that. They have to figure it out for themselves as they grow and learn…like we did :)

  7. My daughter is a bit of a naive follower. I always joke that she would be the one to get suspended from schooling for holding someone’s bag of weed when the actual delinquent noticed the principal coming. It wouldn’t occur to her to not blindly help the kid out.
    Rabia @ TheLiebers recently posted..Beware of Quiet ChildrenMy Profile

    • omigosh, yes! I can totally see this happening to my kid too. He would probably EAT the weed.

  8. hahahaha oh my God! Your kid is a trip and a half! At least he tells you things and that allows you to assess the situation and maintain it…. I had the tendency of putting labels on myself and just going with it. My mom found out I was trying to be “Goth” one year… she let me figure that one out alllllll on my own! Turns out Goths can’t constantly tell jokes, smile and laugh at everything, and of course they have to above all HATE humanity and themselves… did I mention I’m a jokester, smiling, self-loving person? lol yeah… Goth didn’t work out.
    Miami Makeup & Hairstylist Artist Veronica recently posted..My Birthday Before & AfterMy Profile

    • Thanks, JD, I’ve loved participating in your Honest Voices Link-Up — and reading the other links — lots of great writing!

  9. I have two boys. 11 and 9. I laughed my entire way through your story (even if I felt your pain) because you see, my oldest son is an Insomniac and was bi-sexual but now he only likes girls again and the younger one? He may be a Ninja and part werewolf.

    So, no, you’re not the only one, and I am so relieved to find I’m not either.

    Found you on the Honest Voices hop and the title of your piece drew me in!
    The Insomniac’s Dream recently posted..My ImmortalMy Profile

    • Ha! Ninja werewolf? Love it! Glad to know I’m not the only one out there!

  10. Just taking his emotional temperature, I say to my grandson (eleven years old) after a car ride in which mom is digging deep to find fault with dad. “So what do you think about all this stuff with Steven and your mom?”
    “My mom has some anger issues.”
    My work here is done.
    Virginia Llorca recently posted..Feature and Follow FridayMy Profile

  11. OMG, I cannot wait for these hilarious conversations. How do you keep a straight face?! I especially loved the bisexual one. And yes, I’m pretty sure your son will be a riot at frat parties!!!!
    Dani Ryan recently posted..Old people are funnyMy Profile

    • I agree, Dani, I may strap a camera to his head when he goes to college and sell it as a reality show. I can only imagine!

  12. We’ve got a bit of that around here with my six-year-old. Mostly that he no longer wants crusts on his sandwiches because his friends don’t eat crusts. The annoyance I feel over this issue does not bode well for vampires and atheism in the future.
    Amy – Funny is Family recently posted..You Can’t Go Home AgainMy Profile

    • ha! it all starts with the crusts! proceed with caution!

  13. So hilarious…if only you knew how often I had watched Matilda and really believed I had super powers, if I should just concentrate enough!

    • Right, Linda? Our kids crack me up! So easily influenced!