The Daily Mail contains an extensive account of the years of abuse that the former wife of Stephen Green suffered at his hands. Although it is still sadly relatively common to hear of campaigns of vicious and violent domestic abuse within marriages, what is notable about this account is that Stephen Green’s attitude towards his wife appears to have been coloured by the extreme religious values which he promoted in the rest of his life:
Caroline Green was often punished by her husband Stephen for failing to be a dutiful, compliant wife, but his final act of violence against her — the one that prompted her long-overdue decision to divorce him — was all the more chilling because it was coldly premeditated.
Stephen Green wrote a list of his wife’s failings then described the weapon he would make to beat her with.
‘He told me he’d make a piece of wood into a sort of witch’s broom and hit me with it, which he did,’ she recalls, her voice tentative and quiet. ‘He hit me until I bled. I was terrified. I can still remember the pain.
‘Stephen listed my misdemeanours: I was disrespectful and disobedient; I wasn’t loving or submissive enough and I was undermining him. He also said I wasn’t giving him his conjugal rights.
‘He even framed our marriage vows — he always put particular emphasis on my promise to obey him — and hung them over our bed. He believed there was no such thing as marital rape and for years I’d been reluctant to have sex with him, but he said it was my duty and was angry if I refused him.
‘But the beating was the last straw. It convinced me I had to divorce him.’
Caroline Green’s story is horrible, but worth reading. Given what we know of Stephen Green’s politics and public conduct, this perspective on the dismal life he forced on his family is unsurprising:
For years Caroline has buried the horrors of her past. Exhuming them has been an act of supreme courage which her children applaud.
There is another reason why she feels she wants to speak out: she says that Stephen has told a neighbour that he and his new wife want to have children as soon as possible.
‘My concerns are, what will he do to these kids?’ says Caroline. ‘My middle and youngest sons have been almost suicidally depressed because of his mental bullying. They still bear the scars.
‘When I see my ex-husband on television quoting the Bible, I think: “Please let this all end”.
‘If people were able to know the real Stephen Green, my hope is that at last it will.’
Stewart Lee will be pleased to see this man exposed – although the fact that this is in the Daily Mail may be a cause of some surprise.