Who Is Hullabaloo22

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Non-Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic

No, the cover image is not me, but it does actually look very much like I did in my late teens, early twenties.

Who Is Hullabaloo22

First, let’s start with who I am not. I am not in Booksie’s employment; I get no wages from Booksie Guy. I do not represent the site in any way more than any other member. I write, I read and I review, just the same as anyone else. Since joining, I could count the number of days that I have failed to post on the fingers of my two hands. So, I am consistent, that’s all. I am not a flag-ship writer and my opinions are my own and not representative of the site.

The origins of my name are no secret either, I have discussed this on the forum. Hullabaloo is an old Muse album, one of their first, and they were all around 22 at the time of recording it. There is a video of ‘The Gallery’ by Muse; if any of you get the chance, check it out. It represents how I feel on a good day.

Muse are one of my obsessions, along with Apocalyptica. I also collect tarot and oracle decks, not for use, but for the art inspiration. Oh, and I collect books, mostly ebooks now due to a severe lack of space. I favor Gothic clothing, especially over-sized hoodies.

When I was twelve my mother attempted suicide and I went to live with her parents while she was in and out of the psych ward. When my classmates found out, I was mercilessly bullied about it and blamed for it, so I followed in her footsteps.

There were no child or adolescent mental health services then, and I found myself in the adult ward, on and off for a few years. Mental health treatment at that time primarily consisted of intimidation. You wanted to get out, you learned the right answers – it was that simple.

Staff vetting was certainly not as it is now. Some of the staff were Mormons who were simply preying on the weakness of the patients. My mother fell foul of them, and I got dragged along; they also blamed me for my mother’s problems, and in 'washing away my sins' nearly drowned me. That experience turned a religious skeptic into a confirmed atheist.

I have no qualifications except basic English, in spite of attending two colleges and one polytechnic on adult courses, all before I was 21. I simply could not cope with the social aspect of these places, and in that regard things have only got worse.

On top of ever-changing psychiatric diagnosis, I went suddenly blind, and was later told I had multiple sclerosis, in a very virulent form. Sometimes I could not see; sometimes my hands would not work and sometimes I could not walk. I had no sensory feelings and once got into a boiling hot bath without feeling a thing.

This saw the beginning of a dispute between neurology and psychiatry about what was really wrong with me, and the disagreements led me to having a breakdown from which I never fully recovered. After extensive tests which I won’t go in to, (you can always read ‘May You Never RIP’ in my profile) I had a lumber puncture, and it was discovered that I had a virus of the central nervous system and not multiple sclerosis.

I self-harmed before there was even a term for it. I starved myself until I weighed just five and a half stone. In fact, I continued to control my weight to be seven stone or less until after the birth of my second son, having become an accomplished bulimic.

The drugs that I was treated with for non-existent multiple sclerosis led to early onset arthritis. I was not expected to be around for long enough for that to be considered a problem. But hey, I'm still here and it is.

Have I totally bored you yet?

For years I virtually withdrew. I managed to keep away from any kind of doctors until having children, and then only for a brief moment in time. Then came the blow, that in a way answered a lot of questions.

Both of my sons were diagnosed with Autistic Spectrum Disorder in their teens, along with depression and social phobia. After a lot of research, I realised that they had inherited it from me. ASD was until recently thought to affect males only. Females are less likely to suffer from it than males, and it manifests itself in very different ways. Perhaps I could have been saved a lot of anguish, had a proper diagnosis been made while I was still young.

It took a lot for me to begin to write and even more to share it. I joined Wattpad, but had such a bad experience there that I left after a year. I was really nervous when I joined Booksie, but there were some very considerate and friendly members here that helped me to gain confidence. I was in a really bad way, and having the opportunity to write things out made it easier for me to cope with them. Dark writing, for me, is like a safety valve; a way of expressing feelings which otherwise would stay inside and fester more than ever. I have never written exclusively dark material, but sometimes it becomes more necessary than others.

I do not write anything to inspire pity. In fact, I have nothing but scorn for pity; I don’t need it. I survive. I do not wallow in misery but get up each day with the intention of getting through it, even though I know that I could well be on the receiving end of abuse from either of my sons, both now in their twenties and much bigger and heavier than me. They depend on me; I do not have any choice other than to be available almost 24/7, 365 days of the year. Some might be able to turn their backs, take the option of institutionalizing; I won’t do that.

Now, let’s talk about friends. There are always plenty of people willing to claim to be your friends online; how many of you remember Nika (if you’re a member again, Hi!’) How things went crazy when I pointed out in a comment that females were as likely to be involved in occult practices in the past as males. Things escalated to such an extent that she made barely veiled threats. Then there were the ‘good ol’ boys’ who suggested that I might be better suited to knitting than talking politics. Now there’s the implication that my depressing posts led to a member reportedly committing suicide. This, I’ll address in a different post.

I have no real-life friends; it’s almost impossible to make any when you suffer from crippling lack of confidence and social phobia. I do have four very good friends on Booksie; people that have proved time and again that they could be trusted. Dr. Acula, Jeff Bezaire, and Sue Harris have been totally supportive. Mike S and I have a very deep friendship, (not that it is anyone’s business but there’s no sexting involved, sorry, to disappoint you, D). We do what friends are supposed to do and cover each other’s backs rather than plunge the knife in at the first opportunity. At least that’s how things were until SOMEONE decided to put it all at risk with her snide, personal commenting.

I’m hoping that what we have will be strong enough to withstand this.

I have no problem with the post that should have more clearly been labelled as being aimed at me. We should all be able to post what we want, so long as it is in the boundaries of what the site allows. What I do have a problem with is the personal attack that was made in the comments, both to myself, and to a lesser degree to Mike.

Every single thing that I have written is here on Booksie, some of it is posted on Wrting.Com. It is going to stay that way; I am going to continue to post everything here for Booksie is my home from home. Nobody is forced to read anything of mine, or of anyone else’s, and perhaps some members would do well to remember this fact.

Submitted: January 23, 2020

© Copyright 2022 hullabaloo22. All rights reserved.

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Add Your Comments:


Derina Peng

Thank you. It was a great article, all of them. And I could understand you better now. (I don't know about Nika thou.)

Thu, January 23rd, 2020 3:02pm


Thanks for reading, Derina.

Thu, January 23rd, 2020 7:21am


I'm certain that I don't understand the context here, but I don't feel that I can say nothing after reading this.

In this electronic medium, everyone has an equal voice. Hullabaloo's resonates with me and with many, many others. It is sometimes haunting, sometimes lonely, sometimes comforting, and nearly always beautiful. I would wager that there are far more lives enriched than enervated by her touch. I can guarantee that this is the case for at least one poor soul. :)

To those who would look to place blame, take a hard look in the mirror. If you feel that a voice should say something different, then use yours to say it.

Hullabaloo--please don't take mean-spirited personal criticism too much to heart...

"You've got strength
You've got soul
You've felt pain
You've felt love
You can grow (you can grow)
You can grow (you can grow)
You can make this world what you want
You can revolt
You can revolt
You can revolt" --Muse

Thu, January 23rd, 2020 4:34pm


Thanks, HA. If you read my essay 'Music and Me' that I'm about to post you'll find out just how much that comment means to me.

Thu, January 23rd, 2020 9:06am

Mike S.

Great article, Hull, and even though I knew this stuff before, I'm glad you laid it all out there again, in one place, and let everyone know where you're coming from

Thu, January 23rd, 2020 5:58pm


Thanks, Mike. It was not without reservations that I posted this, but I guess it had to be done.

Thu, January 23rd, 2020 10:02am

Compass Girl

Wow, Hull. Thanks for sharing some of your personal life, struggles, and interests with us. When I came on Booksie I was having a crisis and writing was extremely cathartic for me. Myself being a new writer and terrified of sharing my poetry, you were so uplifting and supportive, and inspiring, you just have no idea.
You have overcome A LOT of adversity and it sounds like you continue to face challenges. I enjoy reading your poems and other pieces. In reading this piece, I gather there is much of you that is very different from me and much that is similar and I can appreciate them both.
Lots of love,

Thu, January 23rd, 2020 6:01pm


Thanks so much for giving this a read, CG. I can remember when I first joined Booksie how nervous I was and Mike helped me SO much.

Thu, January 23rd, 2020 10:03am

Jeff Bezaire

It's the thing about Booksie or any writing site, we all join for different reasons. For some, it's to advance their skills in the hopes of becoming a published author; to others, it's to share their passion and have fun; for others, it's to share their experiences and connect with others.
Writing is not limited to creative fiction, the Booksie community is not limited to one kind of writer or one kind of writing. Unfortunately, Booksie falls subject to the same pitfalls that social media does - people cast aside their common sense, fail to exercise their freedom of choice and instead decide to nitpick at something or make an issue of that which is not a real issue but that they're not big enough to ignore. And it deteriorates the specialness of this place.
Nika is just one god-awful example of that. Jesus, I'm happy those days are far behind us! If only she had been the last.
This must be your fourth or fifth piece written about your past, and something I've noticed with each piece is you make them longer, go into more detail, revealing more of yourself so people better understand who you are. It's admirable to see you do not retreat into the dark, but stand and raise your voice. No one will ever be able to get the better of you, Hully. You've proven you have more tact than the bullies and dissenters who would prefer you change. Take a bow.

Thu, January 23rd, 2020 8:09pm


Thanks, Jeff. I think that this one was by far the most revealing all in one place. It left me feeling pretty drained, to be honest, but not so much that I won't take that bow (Matt Bellamy style).

Thu, January 23rd, 2020 12:28pm


WOW! Absolutely love the openness of this. I salute you for your honesty. Fantastic piece, Hully!!!!!

Thu, January 23rd, 2020 9:06pm


Thanks so much, jmm. I felt absolutely drained after writing it.

Fri, January 24th, 2020 4:04am

LE. Berry

Feel I know you better...and that's always good. Relate-ability creates friendship. A member here asked me a while back why I don't do the fan part here on booksie. People have 'fanned' me and I haven't fanned back to anyone. The reason is I prefer friend to fan. Hope you can number me among them hullabaloo22...

Thu, January 23rd, 2020 9:08pm


Thanks, LE. That is much appreciated.

Fri, January 24th, 2020 1:03am

Sue Harris

This is a very moving piece, Hully. While I have been privy to some of the struggles life has thrown at you, this piece chronicles the full, harrowing traumas you have faced in so many aspects of your life and the resulting effects on both your physical and mental health. I actually gasped at some of your revelations, particularly at being misdiagnosed with MS. Given the catalogue of personal struggles you have faced, and continue to face, I have to applaud your strength and determination not to give up, but to absorb yourself in the skill at which you excel and which provides, not only a distraction from your on-going struggles but, when necessary, an outlet to vent and voice your torment and turmoil. Since meeting you on Booksie, your writing has enriched my life in all its forms. You are an inspiration, Hully, and an exceptionally gifted writer, don't ever stop!

Thu, January 23rd, 2020 10:48pm


Thank you, Sue. Your comment actually brought a tear to my eye. Thank you for all the support that you've shown over the years.

Fri, January 24th, 2020 4:07am



Thu, January 23rd, 2020 11:57pm


Thanks, ratwood2!

Fri, January 24th, 2020 4:08am

moa rider

; ) Usianguke

Fri, January 24th, 2020 1:12am


Thanks, Moa.

Fri, January 24th, 2020 4:10am


Like you, I don't have real-life friends in the last years. That's not about social phobia (otherwise, you wouldn't see my real photo in the profile, this guy is me). Friends would learn shocking things about me; not criminal, but they would learn and kick me up. It's a specifical family and relationships between us, some facts about my health that make me "special".

I don't want to put some real-life friends in my life knowing nothing about them before. I often see in the past, for example, in the schools, like people would not want to be my friends, so they disappear. If people disappear, your mood becomes low. And the next thing, you think that is something wrong with you. I suppose that there is no wrong with me, just people don't want to see or imagine someone very different from them.

Also, if you think that real-life friends are very needed for you, you avoid developing yourself and your knowledge, you trying to be friendly instead of your interests. The question is, is "to be friendly" is something that needs for you or you think that because of friendship's or communicate's fashion?

Fri, January 24th, 2020 5:00am


Thanks, Roman. It's been like that since I was thirteen or so.

Fri, January 24th, 2020 4:15am

dewey green

You have a new mate, that's the Tea Hullabaloo22! Life is full of hardship and misfortune. We who persevere and can still muster creativity are unique to say the least. Sorry about your encounter with the MoMo's, I live amongst them, they're sadly brainwashed and Stepford like. I think God had a greater plan that didn't involve organized religion. I admire your strength and creative durability me hearty. Good and tragic yet relatable read.

Fri, January 24th, 2020 6:06am


Thanks for taking the time to read this, dewey, and to reply too.

Fri, January 24th, 2020 4:16am

Christy Writes

This is a brave piece of writing, Hully. I say that because so many of us shy away from being honest with the world and being open about our truth. But it's what you've always done; you write with honesty and sensitivity and it's an admirable thing to do. It's one of the many reasons you are a great writer. This was a rough patch indeed, but I'm certain nothing will ever stop you from being a writer. It is your destiny and something you will always have. Although we don't talk very often, know I keep you in my thoughts and that I wish you the best.

Fri, January 24th, 2020 3:14pm


Thanks, Christy. I think that in a way honesty is one of my problems; I find it impossible to pretend.

Fri, January 24th, 2020 7:55am

Derina Peng

I read it again when my head is clearer. I want to thank you again for this. With more understanding I grow more admiration for you. I am an anti-Psych, I distrust and loath them, everything I have seen or known about them classified as criminal and horror movies to me. I knew briefly about your encounter, so I knew you are a survivor. A tough and strong-will being. Now, I have more data, spare the part I felt emotional of as I read, I want to say I will never pull you down or feel grumpy about your writing again. The reason simply being that it added to my own agony. So I pled for a stop. But now I know You and others do have a right to vent your feelings and express yourself in full. Expose the Psych and Momo and all sort of thing if you want. I still yet to read that RIP story. With a different viewpoint, I grow more apreication about dark poetry too, honestly I wrote about them too, but I kept them myself. The Wailing Satellite was a start..but I never be able to bring myself to complete it or post more of it, as it was more or less about my life. I think I am like you- no confident about writing to begin with. Your role a bit like Mike to me, you encourage me all along and read almost all of my writing. I felt being heard and encouraged. It was something I will never forget. You know I only started to write in English daily since I got onto this site. I learnt a lot from your writings too. Many of my writings were inspired by yours. I had a lot of fun each nigh even I had to have 4-5hrs sleep in last couple months, I still couldn't stop using this site, depite how I was warned, device checked and wifi blocked...I went berserk on the thought of stopping writing and reading, and my devices got confiscated. And this morning's idea of giving up writing, which I went heavily in grief on. I think I find my passion in writing English through you. And growing attachment to you and your writings. Yours are the one I will click and read daily, but they are too many for me to cope to read them all, so I mainly read your poems. Clicking to hullabaloo 22 is a routine and a must before I fall in sleep. Now you know why I can't "don't read". You are that additive to some. I hope we've cleared up the misunderstanding on the subject of dark poetry between us now. I will write another open letter to apology in later time, not today...as it was nearly 3am now. I want to confess one more thing too. I actully enjoyed how you and that writer captured the darkness so well that I grew jealousy on both of you. Don't kill me, please! And the first line of that letter when I first wrote before I edited it was "You are a black diamond shone brightly in the night. Sang a song of dark beauty which no one could write..." The image of black hole was never in my mind till last min before I posted it. I don't know how it all went wrong. I thought there was no such thing as "black diamond" and I might get laughed at. So only thing I could think of to change into was that Goddammed back hole. : ) well...here you go. A diamond to me you are. A clouful one!

Fri, January 24th, 2020 3:39pm


Ah, Derina, you had just as much right to put out your opinions, you know. Honestly, I'm not a person that holds grudges; what's been said has been said. We are never going to agree on everything, and that's fine.
I want you to know that I'll be posting something called 'Don't Demonize Depression' that is no way aimed at you. I'd planned it at the start of the week and just have not got round to writing it yet.

Fri, January 24th, 2020 8:00am

L.E. Belle

I personally want to thank you for defending yourself. I also doubt that you could be guilty of anything. I also agree with what you wrote in your article about not demonizing depression. I also doubt that writing dark poetry is suicide inducing. On the contrary, I have that writing dark poetry helps to relieve stress and allow us to speak our voice when we might otherwise not be able to. I would argue that dark poetry has helped me to keep my mental health stable. Thank you for all your wonderful writing and I continue to look forward to reading your remarkable works.

Fri, January 24th, 2020 11:54pm


Thanks so much, L.E.

Sat, January 25th, 2020 11:51am

Adam R. Carlton

Hey Hull, it's been a while, I have not been on Booksie in a long time but glad I clicked one of the links from your huge body of work in my secondary email - this one! I'm hoping I get the chance to read more of your writing very soon.

Your story is so relatable, in particular being in and out of the psych ward system. I have horrendous trust issues and crippling social anxiety despite being super confident in my early twenties. I think you're brave and inspiring to write in such a candid way.

The blindness, is this permanent? I'm not sure I understood fully. It is great that you are there for your children. It is also great to see you so committed to posting on Booksie. I went from here to Wattpad (so basically the opposite way you did!). I have one of my books posted on there. I've written two more and don't know what I want to do whether it's actually publish, post online or something else altogether. One day maybe I'll figure it out. I'm glad posting here makes you happy, I want to find the time to use Booksie again.

That was my long-winded way of saying thanks for sharing your inspirational story. I'm happy I came back. All the best to you, I know you'll go a long way with your writing, you've already accomplished so much.

Sat, February 8th, 2020 5:56pm


The blindness was a part of the central nervous system virus. Some days I'd be able to see, but others it would attack the retinas and I could be blind for up to a month. Luckily the virus burned itself out after about four years.
Thanks so very much for giving this a read, and for that wonderful comment. It's nice to know a bit more about you too.

Sat, February 8th, 2020 10:18am

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