Iris – the statement…

IRIS Robinson’s statement in full…

AFTER Christmas I announced that I did not intend to seek re-election for any public office. I did this to allow the party and my colleagues to make preparations and move forward. However, I also indicated that I would want later to explain what lay behind my decision.“I have had physical health problems for most of my life but very few were aware that over recent years those medical problems were both physical and mental.

“Thousands of people suffer from mental illnesses of varying levels of gravity. In public life we are the last to seek out help. I am deeply appreciative of the many hundreds of messages of understanding and comfort that I have received over the last week – many from those who, like me, have faced similar challenges in life.

“I know there will be media interest in these issues so while I need space to recover, I want to explain further.

“For me, my illness led to severe bouts of depression which altered my mood and personality. I fought with those I love most – my children and friends; saw plots where none existed and conducted myself in a manner which was self-destructive and out of character.

“During this period of serious mental illness I lost control of my life and did the worst thing that I have ever done.

“Over a year and a half ago I was involved in a relationship. It began completely innocently when I gave support to someone following a family death. I encouraged friends to assist him by providing financial support for a business venture.

“Regrettably, the relationship later developed into a brief affair.

“It had no emotional or lasting meaning but my actions have devastated my life and the lives of those around me.

“Everyone is paying a heavy price for my actions. Psychiatrists may suggest that my mental illness was a significant factor explaining my irrational behaviour – I do not, in any way, question or doubt their judgement – but in order to master my life I do not want to dilute the blame or resist taking full responsibility for my actions. I am completely ashamed and deeply embarrassed.

“I am aware that I did not only hurt Peter, I hurt my family and friends. I let down thousands of people who placed their faith in me and though my medical condition was a factor I was not, at this time, true to the values I professed. I grieve that I have damaged my profession in Christ but I am comforted that He was able to forgive even me.

“I would pay any price on Earth to take back the wrong I have done and the hurt I have caused to those around me. I love my husband more than I can ever say. I know this more now than ever before.

“So great was my guilt and regret that I tried to take my own life ten months ago. I have received the best of care and support both from family members and from health professionals.

“While, as might be expected, I am struggling at present with my illness and receiving treatment I am determined to regain my health and strength and work to repair the damage I have caused to my marriage and family.

“I do not deserve a second chance but I have been given one. Nothing is more important to me.

“I sincerely apologise to all those I have hurt and let down. I have inflicted deep pain on my husband Peter, my family, friends, staff and all those who have supported me. I am so, so, sorry.”


  • Someone has found a pic of Iris with the mystery man:

  • “Psychiatrists may suggest that my mental illness was a significant factor explaining my irrational behaviour – I do not, in any way, question or doubt their judgement – but in order to master my life I do not want to dilute the blame or resist taking full responsibility for my actions.”

    One half of that sentence is not like the other.

  • John O’Connell

    I think there was something very patriarchal about Peter’s statement and comments and in the very fact that only he spoke.

    We really had too much information about the affair and the suicide attempt. Clearly there are other reasons for the media stand. She was effectively hung out to dry emotionally and psychologically by her husband and I hope there are good reasons for this. I expect that Spotlight have uncovered alleged financial impropriety and Iris is about to go down for it.

    But she was treated like a child being chastised who needed to say sorry over and over to big daddy Peter.

    Of course, he took it really badly and perhaps the scandal will fully unfold in future.

  • joeCanuck

    pic either unavailable or would be N.I. viewers have overloaded the site.

  • percy

    good copy john,
    you’re so much more accessable when you write like that.

  • @PaulEvans that is baked in wrong sauce.

  • joeCanuck

    perhaps the scandal will fully unfold in future

    John, I hope you are referring to the other hints about financial impropriety.
    The extramarital affair is the Robinson’s business, nobody else’s.

  • Pigeon Toes

    For crying out loud, his wife tries to commit suicide and the man is boasting that twelve hours later he was answering questions in the Assembly!

    So, why now get so visibly emotionally upset?

    Oh yeah that’s right the story was about to break.

    Not the kind of “transparency” we need.

    Wonder if the twee cushion in the background came from darling daughter?

  • Stevo20

    This whole thing feels and smells… why so upset now…. knowledge of the affair breaking was 9 months ago. What else are Spotlight about to reveal, I agree with Joe, there is more to this than meets the eye, in fact I know there is a lot more, most of which will never come out.

    Ultimately however if it affects his ability to do his job then it is our business, and it obviously has, hence the ever detiorating relations with the bold Martin over the last half of 2009, lets be honest any of us would be hard to get along with if we had the worry of that lot going on in the background!

  • Alias

    “Psychiatrists may suggest that my mental illness was a significant factor explaining my irrational behaviour…”

    Perhaps the same ‘psychiatrist’ who has a ‘cure’ for homozexuality might, but all others psychiatrists would know that irrationality is only a sympthom of manic depression. As she does not suffer from manic depression, no psychiatrist would proffer general depression as an explanation for irrational behaviour.

    The other problem with her using her alleged clinical depression as mitigation for her behaviour is that loss of libido (sex drive) is a symthom of it, so clinical depression offers a deeply flawed explanation for why she initiated a sexual relationship outside of marriage.

  • “I grieve that I have damaged my profession in Christ but I am comforted that He was able to forgive even me.”

    Isn´t it teensy bit arrogant to claim to know what God is thinking?

  • joeCanuck

    C’mon. We don’t need armchair psychiatric diagnoses.

  • iluvni

    so, again, has she resigned as MP yet or just continues to take the wages for fuck all work?

  • Alias

    They are simple statements of fact, Joe. No diagnosis offered.

    a) “…irrationality is only a symptom of manic depression…”

    b) “…loss of libido (sex drive) is a symtom of it, so clinical depression offers a deeply flawed explanation for why she initiated a sexual relationship outside of marriage.”

  • joeCanuck

    Well, I know manic depressives who will fuck anyone in sight during their manic phases.

  • Alias,
    Perhaps she just had the horn (as Derek and Clive might have said).

  • Alias

    Good for you. I’m sure that increases your chances of getting laid. However, Ms Robinson does not claim to have manic depression: she claims to have clinical depression.

  • Alias

    ^^ To Joe.

  • Pigeon Toes

    Um, why did we need Peters lengthy supercilious
    spin on this? “”I love my wife. I have always been faithful to her. In a spirit of humility and repentance Iris sought my forgiveness, she took responsibility upon herself alone for her actions and I have forgiven her. More important, I know that she has sought and received God’s forgiveness.”

    Wouldn’t Iris’ statement been enough with a “This is a private matter for Iris and myself” from Peter?
    Something about this stinks…

    Where is Iris by the way?

  • joeCanuck

    It wasn’t me who diagnosed manic depression. Who was it? Oh, it was you.

  • Rory Carr

    The extramarital affair is the Robinson’s business, nobody else’s.

    Hang on a minute, Joe. There is at least one somebody else whose affair this is and that is the fellow who enjoyed the other part of the affair part of this whole affair. That’s fair, isn’t it?

    The rumours are growing increasingly strong that he is a Taig, a Fenian, an apostate, a Romish, a wafer-eater and that’s a whole lot of other people’s business. Besides which they choose to pursue a career in the public spotlight offering before us the example of their washed-in-the Blood-of-the-Lamb wholesome purity and profiting mightily and materially from that pursuit. So, just as with Peter and Jordan, the spin of Peter and Iris has to be accompanied by prurient details of the shenanigans of Peter and Iris. Their adoring public demands no less.

    And I for one want me money’s worth. Britney Spears never got a break because of her mental collapse and she really did completely and publicly collapse and she was a lot more entertaining than Iris, but like Iris, a good Christian (or so they both liked to tell us).

    Still and all with all this dosh and sex scandal overtaking NI politics just like the UK and France and Italy and everywhere else we are all in danger of the world’s former violent hot-spot erupting into normality. So if we have to suffer boring normality along with every other country then we should at least have the opportunity to enjoy the titillation of prurient speculation that is enjoyed everywhere else as well.

    So, yes!, let’s have the ‘down ‘n’ dirty’ I say. We’ve earned it and besides it’s healthy and good for the soul. Much more so than the hypocrisy of secrecy, privelege and repression we have been enduring till now. I just hope there might be a video-tape out there somewhere so that NornIron can have its own Pammy ‘n’Tommy moment on YouTube. That would really bring us as mature and hip into the 21st century with a bang (and also with “a bang” instead of all those “booms” which had become all we were known for).

  • joeCanuck

    And I for one want me money’s worth

    I do like a bit of tittilation meself, Rory.
    Only meant to imply that it should have no bearing on (Mr.)Robinson’s political position unless it can be shown to affect his judgement.

    Recently I have been accused of excessive Gerrylove. I’m eagerly awaiting a new accusation of excessive Peterlove.


  • percy

    terrific stuff rory carr
    reminds me of a line in the fisher king
    ” we really wanna know those details
    of the failed lives of people that we want to be “

  • John O’Connell

    Thanks Percy.

    Joe, of course I was referring to the financial scandal. I did say that the affair story was too much information.

  • Eleanor Bull

    “I grieve that I have damaged my profession in Christ but I am comforted that He was able to forgive even me.”

    God, Tony Blair’s representative in Heaven, is apparently moonlighting as counsel to Iris, and there’s this nauseatingly uncomfortable notion in these words that she appears to have a direct line to Him.

    In theory, men of the cloth (be it Catholic or protestant) are the conduits between us mere mortals and God, and in the main our lay theological knowledge is not wide or deep enough to give us the knowledge to manage such morality issues, although I concede I don’t know much about fundamentalist protestantism and perhaps they do it differently there.

    But if Iris has a direct line to the Almighty, it’s surprising He wasn’t providing advice -through prayer- at the time of her temptation.

    All in all, the ‘God has forgiven me’ line strikes me as hollow, inserted for the benefit of the party faithful.

  • ding dong

    Its interesting that theologically iris is now relying on the New testament forgiveness of Christ to absolve herself where as previously she relied on the Old testament to condemn others.

    So for consistancy maybe the story of King David is worth a look, he had an affair with Bathsheba – he also had Bathsheba’s husband killed, now we are not suggesting iris did this but King David had an affair tried to when bathsheba got pregnant he tried to cover it up but it all went pear shaped when Nathan the prophet caught up with him.

    Outcome? the child died, David begged forgiveness – was forgiven – but the house of David never knew peace again.

    lesson – God can and will forgive but there are consequences and when leading a country the consequences may extend to the people you lead – so maybe its best for Peter to step down too!

  • Greenflag

    eleanor bull,

    ‘All in all, the ‘God has forgiven me’ line strikes me as hollow, inserted for the benefit of the party faithful.’

    The pretense must always be maintained by those who would be our ‘leaders’ political or spiritual . Mrs Robinson is only one in a long list of ‘moralists’ on this island and elsewhere who will be remembered for not practicing what they preach unto others . Ironically by wearing both spiritual and political collars at the same time (Pentecostalist DUP and FM’s wifey) she now symbolises the ‘moralistic hypocrisy’ that has permeated politics and religion and the finances of both, on this island North and South . The other ‘island’ is no example and an even worse example is seen across the great pond to the west.

    ‘I concede I don’t know much about fundamentalist protestantism’

    They have their fair share of hypocrites and sychophants just like the ‘mainstream’ denominations . Conventional wisdom alone maintains that they are more batshit crazy than the mainstreamers. But then ‘conventional wisdom’ maintained for a long time that property prices would always rise and that Alan Greenspan was the fount of economic wisdom personified .

    There’s not much to know about the fundies other than some are scary in an almost medieval catholic way. Ayatollahs minus the beards and minus the absolute political control. And for the latter we should all be truly thankful.

    Still lets wish Mrs Robinson a speedy return to good health . The change in life as it’s called affects womenfolk in sometimes mysterious ways.
    Throw in lots of dosh and political ambition and the mysterious can become less mysterious .

    Mr Robinson’s days may be numbered as DUP leader but fair dues to the man for his public statement .
    It came a good deal faster than many of the statements emanating from RC Church episcopal procrastinators this past decade and longer!

  • gmacor

    In March 2009 MPs would have known that details of their expenses claims were about to be made public. Did this trigger Mrs Robinson’s crisis?

  • Rory Carr

    I, on the other hand, Greenflag have preached licentiousness, profligacy, drunkeness and debauchery all my life and have practised what I preached with all my might and to the very best of my ability.

    Do you think that I might now be considered fit to take my rightful place as leader (for life) of the Irish nation?

  • Greenflag

    Rory Carr ,

    I knew CJ Haughey and you are no CJ 😉

    Although your qualifications are impressive on consideration I would think you should restrain your ambitions to the leadership of the Tory Party. I see a close connection between your qualifications and the modus operandi of the British party of family values . Now those boyos have a history that would put both Iris R and CJ to shame . You could of course try the UUP sorry UCUNF as an intermediary stage as you climb the greasy pole . They appear to be in need of some leadership at this time . SF are catered for and the TUV are still maintaining the God direct line connection .

    Another factor to bear in mind re your rightful claim is the sad fact that the Irish nation is already replete with more qualified candidates than your good self in the departments mentioned above . Also you have failed to mention any qualifications or even convictions in corruption , financial fraud , or misuse of public funds and you failed to mention that your second cousin was the Bishop of Ferns 😉

    It’s always struck me as a sad comment on the human condition that whereas killing others in a war or sending others to their death in war or even proposing war , is rewarded with electoral success – this can all be undone by having a bit of nookie with the secretary or the Ministeress of Education .

  • fpveritas

    Has anybody seen Iris since her statement last week?

  • fpveritas

    Has anybody seen Iris since her statement last week?

  • fpveritas

    Is this the same Iris Robinson who always took the moral high ground and reverted to quoting scripture to emphasise her opinion?
    I refer to Newsletter article dated 2.11.2009 when interviewed by Helen Mc Gurk the journalist under the heading First Lady talks of her faith and politics.
    Iris had quite a bit to say regarding homosexuals and the Word of God.
    I quote ” I was delighted,obviously that the Ombudsman defended my right to quote scripture. I think that it was an imporand landmark in terms of what Christians can say. It was a very difficult period in my life but it was the truth and I don’t regret it ”
    I would like to remind Iris that the Seventh Commandment as recorded in Exodus 21 verse 14 plainly states ” Thou shalt not commit adultery”
    Adultey is the correct title to use and ought not be diluted to language such as Affair / Inappropriate Behaviour / Transgression etc.
    Sin is sin and ought not to be sanatised and it is deeply regrettable to hear certian pastors who by their failure to condemn this evil are in fact condoning it
    Yes King David committed adultery he later repented but sadly the consequences followed his offspring.
    It is not possible to eradicate the consequences of sin whilst it can be forgiven if reprented of
    Iris is reported as saying that she was deeply deeply sorry. Sorry for her sin or sorry she was caught on. We are all sorry when we are caught!
    Jeffrey informs us that the third party is a young man but he does not know his identity.
    He would be better employed as a clairvoyant than as a Member of Parliament.

  • Reader

    Eleanor Bull: In theory, men of the cloth (be it Catholic or protestant) are the conduits between us mere mortals and God…
    But if Iris has a direct line to the Almighty…

    No, and no.
    Your first statement is not true for Protestants
    Your second point is based on the assumption that Iris was somehow informed about God’s forgiveness after the fact. Actually, as a Prod, Iris would believe that she would be automatically forgiven by God if she sincerely repented, as part of a deal cemented 2000 years ago. I.e. no need for men in frocks, self-flagellation or Mysterious Voices in the Head. So she was merely affirming that she was really, genuinely, sorry.