Monday, December 28, 2009

Goodbye Mrs Robinson

So long, farewell, you're departures overdue.
She won't be missed by you, and you and you.

Yes Iris Robinson is to quit public life stating depression as the reason.

Now I wouldn't normally make like of anyone's mental health but Iris has hoisted a petard of her own making in her utterances on the subject of mental health. Remember back in 2008 when Iris said:

"I have a very lovely psychiatrist who works with me in my offices and his Christian background is that he tries to help homosexuals - trying to turn away from what they are engaged in."

I wonder if she is now working with him in his offices?

Of course as Iris points out she is just one in four of the population who "struggle with mental illnesses at one level or another". That is people with a genuine reason for going to see one. Not for the reason that is 2008 she advocated that about one in ten of the population needed to see one. He lovely psychiatrist friend would have had quite a healthy practice if that were the case.

She has said that "the stress and strain of public life comes at a cost and my health has suffered". The thing is that the stress and strain of living a gay life can lead to mental health issues, but majorly these are caused either by not accepting oneself for who you are, which is normally brought on by being surrounded by people around you who consider it to not be right.

As I said earlier I don't cast aspersions at anyone's mental health, regular readers who have read my letter to my sixteen year old self, have probably already put two and two together and I'll be awarding ticks later. So I do wish Iris a full recovery from her depression. I also hope that through this experience she may also learn that some of the things from her public life are utterances that may have led others to a similar state.

Update: In response to one message I have recieved already, depite being educated in Iris's Strangford constituency I will not be putting myself forward as an Alliance candidate to replace her.

Update 2: I see that Iain Dale has linked to this blog post and it is causing some misunderstanding, not from Iain, but from his blog readers. Therefore to verify I'm posting here the comment I have made on Iain's comments.

"I see that [some commenters] have taken my comments in the wrong way.

"As I do say on my own blog I don't take people's mental problems lightly, the reason as hinted at are that I did suffer depression at a young age due to the repression of my sexuality as one who grew up in the Northern Irish culture.

"I do genuinely wish that Iris makes a recovery, but I'm fully aware that recovery from a bout of depression and recovering from depression are two very different things. Indeed just like some people are recovering alcoholics so some people are aware and coping depressives.

"However, as I also know both the stresses of a live involved in politics and also of the stresses of a live being told you are abnormal because of what you feel. I wasn't handing out a scolding but pointing out the juxtoposition of Iris's public statements effect on others and the end of her public life."

1 comment:

Keir said...

This is a debate being carried out across the pond, where comic and shock jock Howard Stern contributor Artie Lange stabbed himself nine times only to be found in time by his mother on her daily round. I don't think Iris Robinson's attempt compares strongly with that (details have not been forthcoming) and she seemsto have managed quite well forsomeone who is clinically depressed. I don't mean to sound flippant with that last point, but she was hardly knocking back gins or ballooning through good old Ulster Fries. Always perectly cifed and groomed with numerous home on both sides of the Pond and offices at Stormont, Westminster chared with terrific responsibilities...


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