Keteyian: Tiger Woods' Sex Addiction About Pain Relief

Woods sought to dull his senses and numb emotional pain, Keteyian said

The DA Show
May 02, 2018 - 11:29 am

USA Today Images


Armen Keteyian dropped by CBS Sports Radio on Wednesday to discuss new book, “Tiger Woods,” which delves into the life and career of one of the most iconic athletes in the world. Keteyian spoke at length about Woods’ struggle with sex addiction, as well as the causes of it.

“It turns out – and it’s pretty easy to understand – it all traces back to the family dynamic,” Keteyian said on The DA Show. “Whether it’s an addiction to sex or it’s an addiction to drugs or alcohol or gambling or something else, it’s a form of pain relief. It’s not about the sex for Tiger – or anybody else – and it’s not just me saying that. It’s people that have been through the Gentle Path Gratitude Program and people like Dr. Monica Meyer, who now runs the Gentle Path Program at The Meadows out in Arizona. That’s really what it traces back to. It’s a form of pain relief. It’s really not about the women as much as it is trying to dull your senses.”

Woods entered rehab in 2010, a few months after news of his affairs went public.

“I think what Tiger experienced at the Pine Grove facility in Mississippi was an extraordinary six weeks of his life,” Keteyian said. “Your really can’t run away from your mothers and fathers and your family upbringing. But the difference was people go in there and it’s private. (For) Tiger, it became like much of the rest of the scandal: a very public part of his epic fall from grace. So you have to factor that in as well because nobody, certainly in the world of celebrities – even Bill Cosby or O.J. Simpson – or even politicians like Anthony Weiner or John Edwards, no one has experienced the public humiliation that Tiger did.”

Woods was trying to numb physical, not emotional, pain, Keteyian explained.

“It’s the emotional pain that you’re numbing out,” he said. “Tiger certainly was having some physical problems as we all know. He wins the U.S. Open in 2008 against Rocco Mediate with a broken leg and without an ACL in his left knee. To this day, that may be the single greatest sporting feat in the last 25 years from the physical standpoint and the fact that he had to go 91 holes in order to win it. But I think when you’re dealing with sex addiction, as you’re dealing with the emotional trauma – he grows up as an only child in a house in Cypress, California, that’s 1,474 square feet. They’re essentially living on top of each other, and there is very little for Tiger outside of mom and dad.”

Woods didn’t have many childhood friends and endured a difficult breakup with his first girlfriend, Dina Gravell.

“It’s heartbreaking in the book,” Keteyian said. “She’s basically just ripped out of his arms by his parents because she’s seen as an obstacle on the march to Tiger turning pro at Stanford. There’s just some heartbreaking moments in this book. But I think what really makes it work is when they happen – and they happen in a linear fashion – you understand them because you’re living through Tiger’s eyes in a lot of ways in this book.”