Jennifer Thomas is a bestselling author, psychologist, speaker, consultant & apology critic

Tiger Woods Leaves His Script Behind… Somewhat.


Over the weekend, Tiger Woods granted his first two interviews (each limited to 5 minutes) since his scandal broke.  This Orlando Sentinel article offers a nice description of the interviews.  Kelly Tilghman, who played college golf at Duke University and ESPN’s Tom Rinaldi are being lauded for their interviews with Tiger Woods.  Tiger did not answer several questions, and no mention was made of the women with whom he has had relationships.  One of them (Joslyn James) has reportedly requested a face to face apology from Woods.

My analysis:  Tiger did something well in this interview:  For the second time in a row, he has said that he is accepting full responsibility for his actions while steering clear of his previous blunders such as saying, “No one is perfect.”  A minor point: I wondered why he wore his hat.  As I watched, I kept wanting to take off Tiger’s hat so I could see his full face.  It seemed to be shielding him from others.  Is he hiding something?

Tiger again pointed to his spiritual resurgence.  He used the word Buddhism a couple of times.  I wonder how that is sitting with his past, present, and future corporate sponsors since fewer than 1/2 of 1% of Americans are Buddhist.

Tiger said, understandably, that he misses his father and that his Dad might have been able to “straighten” him up.  On the other hand, my work as a psychologist underscores the tendency of men to repeat their parents’ missteps.

I worked for one year on the forensic psychiatric inpatient unit at Spring Grove State Hospital in Maryland.  There, I learned that Criminology research suggests this:  In general, people get caught for only about 10% of their offenses.  If this holds true in Tiger’s case, I wouldn’t be surprised to see more skeletons emerging from his closet over the coming months.  These will do double damage to his reputation:  Digesting the actions, themselves, plus the damage to his budding restoration of trust.  I’ll stay tuned.

What are your thoughts?

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