What happens to grown men who lose a hero? My husband is one of many men who admired Tiger because he had it all - success on the course, generosity, and a fulfilling personal life. He was a doting son, father, and it appeared that he was a doting husband, too. For many men, Tiger was different from many other professional athletes, or so it seemed.
Some people question if Tiger has a sex addiction. Perhaps that's the only way that some can justify his behaviors. "Our hero wouldn't do this. He must have a problem." In my personal - and professional - opinion, this is not a sex addiction. This is another example of a celebrity believing that he (or she) is entitled to certain allowances and freedoms. We have a system that has made monsters of mere mortals, suggesting that they are better than others; that they will not have the fate of a philandering "mortal" man. This is hubris, plain and simple.
That being said, there are elements to this particular sex scandal that are different from others before it. Elin Woods looks like the kind of woman men cheat on their wives with. She was the image of the quintessential trophy wife. It is hard for many people to imagine that straying isn't just about finding a younger, prettier model (or in Tiger's case, fifteen similar models).
In certain cases, when a man cheats, some people are quick to blame the wife. In a recent episode of Real Housewives of Orange County, housewife Alexis Bellani said, "A good wife needs to act like the mistress." She spends her days toning her ass, perfecting her implants, and Botoxing her forehead while two nannies tend to her children. For her, that's what a wife is supposed to do. I call bullsh-t. A wife (especially one with two small children) doesn't have the luxury of acting like a lover. She can't turn on at a moment's notice; she has responsibilities. I like to think that I am a wonderful partner and friend, but I do not act like a mistress. I don't have the time nor desire to do so. My partnership is equal. It works because we both value what the other contributes - regardless of the monetary value we attach to it. It is unfair for women to feel as if they have to be perfect for their partners. It's can't be just about money. Partners contribute differently to a relationship. Emotional, financial, parental, and psychological support are all valuable. One is not more important than another.
Back to Tiger - some people are angry that a man's personal life is being scrutinized on the world stage. While I understand this (and agree that our media is over-involved), it's just not realistic in the world today. Our invasive and intrusive media is what helped to create the Tiger Woods brand; no surprise that it also contributed to his undoing.
No matter what, in the end, what is most upsetting about the Tiger Woods scandal is that we now live in a world where we expect our heroes to disappoint us. So instead of worrying what our kids think about Tiger, let's use this as an opportunity to redefine who and what a hero really is. So who are your heroes or heroines?