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Secret Lives: The Tiger Woods Scandal
Aired December 23, 2013 - 19:00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
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911 CALLER: I need an ambulance immediately. I have someone down in front of my house. They hit a pole.
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JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL, HLN ANCHOR: Golf`s biggest star banged up in a late- night run in. Just feet from his Florida mansion.
Secrets. Everybody`s got them. Exhibit A, Tiger Woods. Tonight, how his phony public persona exploded revealing a sordid double life.
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911 CALL: Are you able to tell if he`s breathing?
911 CALLER: No, I can`t tell it right now.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: November 27TH, 2009, Tiger Woods was bloodied when his black Escalade hit a fire hydrant and a tree.
DANIEL SAYLOR, FMR. POLICE CHIEF: My two officers arrived to the scene and noticed Tiger Woods laying on the ground in front of his vehicle with his wife over him rendering him first aid.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tiger was treated at a local hospital and quickly released. But what appeared to be a routine accident was just the tip of a shocking iceberg. Intense media coverage began to reveal a dark side of Tiger, an explosive secret life of sex and betrayal.
DYLAN HOWARD, ENTERTAINMENT REPORTER: When a secret explodes, carnage is left in the white.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: More and more questions were asked and went unanswered. What was Tiger doing at 2:00 a.m. when he crashed? Had there been a big blowup between Tiger and his stunning Swedish wife, Elin Nordegren?
STEVE HELLING, AUTHOR, "TIGER: THE REAL STORY": What happened on the night after Thanksgiving is still up in the air. One thing we do know is that his wife at the time, Elin, did chase him with golf clubs. We don`t know exactly why. We don`t know how she found out all the things he had been doing, but there was a skirmish that happened inside the house that extended outside the house and when Tiger jumped into the car and sped away, he ended up hitting a bunch of things.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: No way said Tiger`s wife, as she denied that version of events in her first interview after the crash.
SANDRA SOBIERAJ WESTFALL, CORRESPONDENT, PEOPLE MAGAZINE: Elin said that he left the house and didn`t come back. She went out to look for him and then she did everything she could to get him out of the car when she found him unconscious in the car. All she wanted people to know was that she`s not violent, she would never and never has taken a golf club to her husband.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Just days after his accident, Tiger`s carefully crafted good-guy image began to crumble as an almost unimaginable avalanche of women came forward with allegations of infidelity.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I don`t have any comment. I`m not going to have any comment.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think he`s still a big fat liar.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There are so many sides to him that I didn`t know that I couldn`t even tell you the person he is.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Many of Tiger`s alleged mistresses were cocktail waitresses, porn stars. They offered up texts and voicemails as proof of his cheating ways.
TIGER WOODS: Hey, it`s Tiger. Can you please take your name off your phone? My wife went through my phone.
HOWARD: Never before have we seen, in the history of sports and even pop culture, a scandal take the twists and turns than this one did.
HELLING: A lot of the women who Tiger allegedly had affairs with say that they were afraid to come forward because they thought nobody`s going to believe me. It`s my word against Tiger Woods. But once the first one came forward, then suddenly each of them felt a little more empowered to come forward and talk about their relationships with him. So one after the other, day after day, more and more women came forward until the scandal just became huge.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Spoke to Tiger, though.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Rachel Uchitel was the first of Tiger`s alleged mistresses to be revealed and reportedly one of his favorites. She`s also believed to have been the spark that ignited the feud between Tiger and his wife Elin.
HOWARD: What took place inside Tiger Woods` multimillion dollar mansion, perhaps, we`ll never be known. Even Elin Nordegren when she gave her first interview, did not shed any light on that. But many sources at the time were telling us that Tiger Woods had become involved in a confrontation with Elin. She had intercepted text messages between Rachel, the primary mistress, and Tiger Woods. Indeed, she had engaged in discussion with Rachel via text message seemingly to trap her into confirming her darkest fears that her husband, the world`s number one golfer, was cheating on her.
Veronica Daniels, better known as porn star Joslyn James, was yet another woman who came forward admitting to a long-time affair with Tiger.
VERONICA DANIELS: He would either come to Vegas or he would have me come out to wherever he was playing. We would text every day throughout the day. Sexual kinds of things, you know.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: With women coming out of the woodwork and the tawdry accusations flying, Tiger eventually cracked. Stoically admitting to his philandering double life.
TIGER WOODS: I was unfaithful. I had affairs. I cheated.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tiger`s astounding confession left fans, friends, and family reeling.
EARL WOODS JR., TIGER`S HALF BROTHER: You know, I was very shocked and I thought of my dad. Is this because he`s not around? Is the dog off the leash, so to speak?
VELEZ-MITCHELL: With his secret life exposed, Tiger hit rock bottom. In the swing of a club, he went from golf`s golden player to one of the world`s most infamous cheats.
HELLING: For 13 years, Tiger Woods was building his image. It was step by step. It was meticulous. He had the best image I think of any star out there. And then within a matter of weeks, all that work was undone.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tiger Woods, disgraced, a champion in ruin. But how did he keep his house of cards from falling for so very long?
SOBIERAJ WESTFALL: He was traveling with a big apparatus of people around him, many of whom were helping to keep the secret.
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VELEZ-MITCHELL: A scandal a secret life exposed.
WOODS: ... I did is not acceptable and I am the only person to blame.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: When Tiger Woods officially confessed to his secret life as a serial cheater, his clean-cut image and career imploded faster than you can say philanderer.
HELLING: Everything that he had built up to was gone because what he was building wasn`t actually the truth.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tiger was pumping his family man persona right up until his world came crashing down.
In an interview just before the scandal broke, a sports reporter asked the supposedly devoted husband and dad, family first and golf second, always been that way, and Tiger responds emphatically, always.
Not always. According to porn star Holly Sampson, months before Tiger`s sex scandals landed him out of bounds, the star of such illustrious films as "Staying on Top" and "Cheating Housewives 6" claimed she had a one-night stand with the Randi golfer at his own bachelor party. Holly made her stunning claim on NaughtyAmerica.com.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Who else? And who else did you (EXPLETEVE DELETED)?
HOLLY SAMPSON: I`m trying to think of who else. Oh, that`s - Tiger Woods. Me and my girlfriends, we did a bachelor party for Tiger and it was amazing and then he picked me to go into the room.
Hi. I`m Holly Sampson.
HELLING: Months before the scandal Holly Sampson who was a porn star had said in an online chat that she had had an affair with Tiger Woods, but who is going to believe Holly Sampson? She`s a porn star and she was making an allegation against a squeaky-clean athlete. And once the scandal happened, and once everybody realized what Tiger was really up to, suddenly, Holly Sampson`s claims had a lot more merit.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: For this former Hollywood madam, Tiger`s double life was just par for the course.
JODY "BABYDOL" GIBSON, FMR. HOLLYWOOD MADAM: That could be the image that he wanted. A lot of the wildest men like to keep that squeaky-clean family. I am just a good married man image. And they are the biggest players in the world. Oh, my goodness, I`ve had more clients that if you only knew to the public were very conservative, church-going individuals but, boy, when they got behind those closed doors, it was a completely different matter.
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VELEZ-MITCHELL: Welcome to our secrets lab. I am here with noticed psychologist Jeff Gardere as well as well-known psychotherapist Robi Ludwig. Let`s talk about sex addiction and particularly the adrenaline rush that somebody gets with getting away with a double-life. I mean Dr. Jeff, is there a thrill? Is there a euphoria, is there a rush to getting away with a double life?
DR. JEFF GARDERE: Well, look, if you`re having sex and it`s good sex, well certainly you`re going to have the adrenaline rushing then, you`ll have the dopamine released which tells you, oh, that was good. Do it again. But if you`re leading a double life and you`re doing something that you`re not supposed to be doing, then that enhances the sex and takes it right off the charts.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: So it`s even more exciting?
GARDERE: Much more exciting and certainly we`ve seen with Tiger that was perhaps that thrill seeking that he was searching for all the time.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: But there`s also this risk taking increases your chances of getting caught.
ROBI LUDWIG: Right.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Is there some kind of unconscious thing going on there, Dr. Robi?
ROBI LUDWIG: There is. Because even though it feels good unconsciously somewhere there`s a desire to get caught. In part because they are so out of control that it`s not healthy and on one level they realize they are not behaving in a healthy way, they are not behaving in a moral way and they are at odds, they are in conflict.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: So you`re saying unconsciously they want to get caught?
LUDWIG: On one level. They want to get caught.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Do you buy that, Dr. Jeff?
GARDERE: I think on some level they do want to get caught, but that`s part of the dirtiness of it, if you will, doing these things, where, yeah, I can get caught. And if I get caught, then I`m going to be humiliated, but all of that plays into that sex that they are having. It`s all part of that different kind of sex that they normally have that might be very boring with their partner.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: What a shame.
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VELEZ-MITCHELL: But how could one of the biggest celebrities anywhere live such a brazen double life? One answer, maybe the Tiger`s chronic womanizing wasn`t so secret, after all?
HOWARD: Inevitably people always ask the question, how was Tiger able to keep this secret, a secret for so long? But, in truth, it was an open secret. But he carefully constructed this powerful persona, this gravita around him that despite the fact that people on the tour knew that he was the world`s number one philanderer and golfer, they didn`t do anything about it.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Of course, when you`re living a secret life, it doesn`t hurt to be the world`s first billionaire athlete.
HOWARD: In many ways, the ultimate carrot which kept this a secret was not Tiger`s control over a situation, it was money. Just cold, hard cash. Everyone involved in Tiger Woods` life was seemingly in some capacity on the take. From the mistresses who were flown around the world, like Rachel who was flown to Melbourne to continue her illicit affair with him, like the women that were flown to various golfing tournaments so that he could carry on this existence away from his family back in Florida.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: And Tiger, apparently, had a routine for choosing which women made the cut.
HELLING: A lot of times Tiger Woods was not the one to approach these women and say that he was interested in them. He would send his people and they would go say, hey, would you like to meet Tiger Woods? Well, what woman wouldn`t want to meet Tiger Woods? So all of these women would say yes and then Tiger would start making the moves on them then. So it wasn`t like Tiger would go to the clubs and approach these women himself. So if they weren`t interested, you know, none of the dirt would get on him.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Fame, fortune, and infidelity. For a time, Tiger Woods had the perfect swing, riding high in front of the cameras and behind closed doors. But when it all came crashing down ...
HELLING: Obviously with this scandal, the people who were hurt the most were Tiger Woods` wife Elin and his two children. But there were a lot more casualties than just that.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: The picture perfect life. The gorgeous wife, the adorable kids. Tiger Woods had it all and then the bottom fell out.
HELLING: I have never seen a fall from grace happen so quickly and so completely as Tiger Woods.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: But no one was more shocked than Elin, Tiger`s gorgeous Swedish wife of five years and the mother of his two young children, Charlie and Sam.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Elin told "People" magazine she felt stupid because she never, ever suspected her husband was having one affair, much less a baker`s dozen.
SOBIERAJ WESTFALL: In fact, her nightmares started on Thanksgiving Day and that that`s when she felt humiliated, deceived, blind-sided that, you know, here I had this world, and this life and then to think all of a sudden was it a lie?
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Elin said, the enormity of the betrayal by her womanizing husband made her life hell.
SOBIERAJ WESTFALL: She tried not to follow every drip, drip, drip of information, that she wouldn`t put the TV on. She would poke around on the Internet if she was told by a friend there was something she needed to see. But otherwise she tried to avoid the news. I think she -- she says she was afraid to turn on the TV. Afraid of what next might come. So she was focused on trying to heal and the day-to-day life with her kids.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Elin may have tried avoiding the media firestorm swirling around Tiger, but the famous golfer who introduced her to Tiger did not hold his anger back.
JASPER PARNEVIK, PROFESSIONAL GOLFER: I really feel sorry for Elin. Since me and my wife were at fault hooking her up with him and we just probably thought he was a better guy than he is then. And I would probably apologize to her and hope she uses a driver next time instead of the 3- iron.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: As Tiger`s marriage imploded, he began hemorrhaging money. "People" magazine reported that Elin alone walked away with an estimated $100 million. But that didn`t make her troubles any less of a punch line on shows like "Saturday Night Live".
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: For all of those who have supported me over the years I offer my profound apology for these multiple transgressions.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Multiple? So it happened more than once?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Did I say multiple? Because ...
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This just in, Tiger Woods is back in the hospital.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Apparently just hours after a press conference where he confessed to multiple transgressions, Woods had an accident in his home where he fell down a flight of stairs, then inadvertently threw himself through a plate glass window.
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VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, back to our secrets lab. Dr. Jeff Gardere is joined by well known divorced attorney Vikki Ziegler. And I`ve got to ask you, Vicky. You`ve covered so many celebrity divorce cases, what do you think it`s like when a woman wakes up and says, I have no idea who this man I`ve been living with for years and having kids with is?
VIKKI ZIEGLER: Devastating. This is sleeping with the enemy 101. What happens is you see victims. What happens normally in these cases, somebody gets married, they walk down the aisle, they take their vows seriously. They say that they are going to be married forever. Now, I`m a divorce attorney so I know that`s not necessarily the case. However, that I think is what Elin thought.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Dr. Jeff, does something like this make Elin question herself? I mean, would she start asking herself, how could I have not known? What`s wrong with me? I`m not blaming her, but it`s got to shatter your world to the point where you`re like, was I in denial?
GARDERE: We see this with a lot of couples where all of a sudden they are waking up with the enemy. They don`t know who that person was, and so when they go on perhaps to another relationship or they are getting through a divorce, they don`t trust their choices anymore. They question their own sense of being. Did I wrap myself around this person because there was something missing in my own life?
But I think we need to say that Tiger Woods didn`t even know who Tiger Woods was. I think Tiger Woods was a stranger to himself because his whole life had been orchestrated and in some ways some people said the marriage with Elin had actually been orchestrated and why they didn`t know each other that way, the way that they should have.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Elin may have been seen by many as the most betrayed woman in the world, but she was certainly not the only woman devastated by Tiger`s secret world of sex and lies.
HELLING: The ripple effect got huge and a lot of people were hurt from it.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tiger Woods` sex scandal cut a swath through both his professional and private lives, it wracked his image, his game and his marriage to his devastated wife Elin Nordegren.
SOBIERAJ WESTFALL: The woman that I sat down with at her kitchen table had lost a lot of weight, her hair was falling out, she was clearly a woman who had gone through an awful lot of stress. She said in the end, a marriage without love or trust wasn`t going to be good for her children.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Physically and emotionally, no one was more impacted than Elin by her husband`s secret life. But she apparently wasn`t the only woman deeply hurt by Tiger`s wandering eye.
HELLING: Obviously with this scandal, the people who were hurt the most were Tiger Woods` wife Elin and his two children. But there were a lot more casualties than just that. You know, the other women. A lot of them thought that this was an emotional connection and it ended up not being one and so some of them were really hurt.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: As the colorful parade of Tiger`s alleged mistresses rolled on and on, some said they felt betrayed and broken hearted by the womanizing superstar, beginning with Rachel Uchitel.
HOWARD: Everyone will talk about Elin Nordegren, the scorned woman. But in all of there is another scorned woman, a woman who had a very high- powered career, previously worked as a television producer and journalist, someone whose partner died in the 9/11 tragedies in 2001 and that is Rachel Uchitel.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: And Rachel may have had every reason to believe she and Tiger were more than just bed buddies. In embarrassing messages that Tiger apparently sent, he told her, "I know it`s brutal on you that you can`t be with me all the time. I get it. It blank kills me, too." And in a line that must have been a kick in the face to his wife, Tiger bemoaned to Rachel, "I finally found someone I connect with, someone I have never found like this, not even at home.
HELLING: You know, it`s very interesting to read these texts that Tiger Woods was sending to these women because you would think that it would all be dirty talk, it would all be about sex. But it wasn`t. A lot of it were saying things like, you know, I want to be with you. I need to be with you and kind of giving the idea that this was more than just a sexual relationship. That this was actually some sort of emotional connection and that was really surprising to these women when it all fell apart.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Of her tortured affair with Tiger, Rachel said all she wanted was to be loved, but she also wanted to tell her side of things. A press conference was set. Then abruptly and suspiciously called off.
HOWARD: Rachel will forever be the other woman in Tiger Wood`s life but she carried on, in her eyes, a relationship with Tiger. It was something more than an illicit affair. But ultimately she played a very good card, too, because when the scandal was exposed, she lawyered up, engaging the high-profiled lawyer Gloria Allred before the conference in which Rachel was to shed some light on what had taken place canceled the media event. And it was said that she secured a hefty multimillion dollar payday from Tiger Woods to preserve her confidentiality.
Gloria did hold a press conference with another of Tiger`s alleged mistresses, another who thought she, too, was the only other woman.
GLORIA ALLRED, VICTIMS RIGHTS ATTORNEY: Good morning. I`m attorney Gloria Allred and I represent Veronica Swift Daniels who is also known as Joslyn James.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Joslyn James, a former porn star told reporters she, too, had been hurt by Tiger and made her believe that they would be together forever.
JOSLYN JAMES, FORMER TIGER WOODS MISTRESS: And he`s like, no matter what, you know, we`re always going to be together. He`s like, we`re always going to have what we have and, you know, nobody is going to be able to satisfy us and please us the way that we do each other.
ALLRED: Joslyn was very hurt by Tiger Woods for a number of reasons. For one thing, she was in love with him and he deceived her. He just lied to her. He told her there were no other women except her and his wife and he gave the impression that he was not in an intimate, sexual relationship with his wife anymore.
JAMES: We would text every day throughout the day. We would talk about, you know, grown-up stuff, you know, sexual kind of things, you know. Not necessarily all about that but, you know, how is your day going?
ALLRED: Their relationship was one that continued for three years. He sent her over a thousand texts. He flew her to various locations. He was constantly communicating with her and, in addition, was telling her that "You pleasure me like no one ever has and no one ever will."
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Beyond Tiger`s painful lies, it may be what he never said that was the ultimate betrayal to those who thought he really loved them.
ALLRED: I`ve never heard him apologize publicly to the women with whom he was in long-term, intimate relationships.
HELLING: When Tiger Woods made his apology, he apologized to everybody, to other golfers, to his friends, to his fans, to his family. But the people who were conspicuously absent from that apology were these women who he had an affair with.
That sent a loud and clear message that they were disposable to him, that they were not people who deserved an apology, even though they were hurt probably a lot more than the random fan would be. But in Tiger`s mind, they weren`t worthy of an apology and that really goes to show how he felt about them.
ALLRED: He never specifically acknowledged his relationship with Joslyn James and he never made amends to her.
JAMES: Initially I wanted him because I was hurt and, you know, I felt that not only did he owe me an apology but he owed several other people an apology.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: No apologies to his alleged mistresses and no apparent reasons for Tiger`s intricate and intimate double life. Or were there?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Once they`ve got everything at their disposal, at their fingertips, it`s like being a kid in a candy store.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tiger`s double life -- sordid, hidden, so many lives destroyed. But why? As with all things secret, it goes back to the beginning.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I know you love baseball but I also know you love golf and I have someone here to challenge you -- ok. So right now I`d like you to meet Tiger Woods and his father Earl Woods.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: On TV`s, "The Mike Douglas Show". So talented, a prodigy but was he molded to a fault?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hit that other ball. Hit that other ball.
HELLING: When Tiger Woods first hit the scene, he was this perfect kid who was an amazing golfer and one thing people don`t realize is that his parents had done a great job of creating this persona for him, making him so marketable that companies would line up to have him endorse their products.
And so a lot of what we know about Tiger Woods and a lot of what we thought we knew about him was a direct result of his parents and they did an exceptional job in creating his brand and making him the icon that he was.
Everybody looks at Earl Woods and talks about his influence on Tiger`s life but you really can`t underestimate the influence of his mother. She was the one who made sure that he was -- had manners, that he did his schoolwork. And Tiger has always said that she was actually more scary to him than his father was because she had certain things that she expected out of him and if he didn`t do those, mom wasn`t happy. And when mom wasn`t happy, Tiger wasn`t happy.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Avoiding his mother`s strict hand and following his father`s wandering eye, so it seems.
HELLING: When Tiger Woods was just 16, he was giving a "People" magazine interview and Earl Woods pulled the "People" magazine writer aside and said "Hey, will you take Tiger home for me because I`m going to go meet this woman." And Tiger knew exactly what was going on.
So it`s interesting to see the patterns that Earl Woods was involved in, kind of repeating themselves with Tiger, even though Tiger absolutely hated what his father was doing, he ended up ultimately repeating the same patterns.
HOWARD: I remember the time that the scandal broke, Tiger Woods was serialized and everyone looked back over the past to see if there were any signs that would lead to why he would do such a thing. This was a kid who, when he grew up, his mother and father had him from the moment he could walk on a golf course. They made and manipulated this young person into the person that he became.
And Tiger`s father was the primary influence over that. A man who died many years before this scandal came out but a man who also had his own struggles with staying faithful. So it`s quite clear that he was brought up in a household where he watched and observed, observed passions that were condoned by his father.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: A philanderist father but a mother with a killer instinct.
HELLING: Tiger Woods was very aware that he was his parents` entire universe. They never even had baby sitters for him when he was growing up. So he was always around either his mother or his father and they put a lot of pressure on him to succeed, to become the brand that he became, not just on the golf course but off the golf course as well.
And the problem with that is when there is so much pressure on really a young kid, a teenager, an adolescent, they do start to rebel and they start doing things that they really shouldn`t do. In high school, everything about Tiger Woods was wrong. He had bad hair, bad clothes, bad everything. And you know, he wasn`t the quarterback of a football team. He was a golfer and in the 90s, golf wasn`t what it is now. He was kind of the nerdy kid who couldn`t get that high school cheerleader. And then he became rich and he became famous and he became this icon who could get any woman he wanted.
So we saw him acting out with his version of those high school cheerleaders, of those pretty blondes that he couldn`t get in high school and I think that was a lot of his motivation behind the things that he was doing.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tiger`s problems stem back to childhood. Namely, he didn`t have one. He was being groomed from childhood to be a superstar. Dr. Jeff Gardere, what does that do to a kid psychologically when they become an adult?
DR. JEFF GARDERE, PSYCHOLOGIST: Well, he had a lot of guidance from his dad. Not just the superstar he wanted him to be but the world`s greatest humanitarian so think about the pressure on that kid. Everything is orchestrated for him so he`s closed off in many ways emotionally.
When he becomes an adult, now he has the freedom, all of the things he wanted to do as a kid, all of the acting out, all of that lack of impulse control, it explodes in adulthood and then we see that really bad inappropriate sexualized behavior.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: It`s rebellion but instead of rebelling as a kid where you might go into a tree house, you go into another kind of a house with a woman.
GARDERE: Exactly. And that`s what we saw with him that even when he was having sex with these women, with some of them, no protected sex. He acted like a child, doing things outside of cars, in his home. That`s what people with low impulse control, acting out -- that`s what a kid would do.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: The Tiger situation isn`t unique, is it, Vikki? I mean you deal with a lot of people who are getting divorced simply because they are too emotionally immature to be married.
VIKKI ZIEGLER, DIVORCE ATTORNEY: Absolutely. I don`t know why people are actually getting married when they act so childish. They didn`t actually have a childhood, they become adults and they actually regress. They go back to behaviors that we know little young people and young children do, not having protected sex -- things that we all know the difference between right and wrong.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Sex to make up for a childhood gone wrong or right -- either way, there`s no denying the impact when a prodigy is turned into a commodity.
MELISSA JOHNSON, GLOBAL BRANDING EXPERT: The consistent theme is that we have been sold a lie.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Long before he swung his way onto the world stage, Tiger Woods was being groomed for superstardom, at first by his parents putting toddler Tiger in the spotlight. On TV`s "The Mike Douglas Show".
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Tiger Woods and his father Earl Woods.
JOHNSON: I believe the branding of Tiger began before he actually stepped foot on the green. His parents were extremely involved in his development, in his polishing and grooming. He had a talent at a young age and they knew that they needed to work and mold him to become not only a successful athlete but a personality as well.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: But when the Tiger show finally did go pro, the groom and molded prodigy got packaged into an instant commodity.
JOHNSON: Tiger Woods is to golf what Michael Jordan is to basketball. Tiger truly reinvented the game and made it a globally relevant brand as it relates to golf. Nike was a part of really launching their golf line through Tiger Woods.
What made Tiger Woods so appealing number one is he`s a winner. He truly revolutionized the game of golf and nobody like as winner like society and particularly brands and partners. And so when they looked at him as a brand, you know, it was not only just the fact that he was a success on the field. He was also likable. He was handsome. He had a unique wit and charm and he was clean. So it was a great marriage for a marketing partnership.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tiger`s secret life was a totally different universe and when that mask of pure marketing was ripped off, it was ugly, tawdry, and sponsors fled like he was on fire.
HELLING: If there`s one thing that sponsors are worried about, it`s image. And when Tiger`s image took a big hit, then a lot of them couldn`t stay with him anymore. He lost everybody from Buick to Accenture. The only ones who stayed with him were Nike who decided that they would hold on to him. But he lost all his other endorsement deals and he lost them very, very quickly.
JOHNSON: I believe Team Tiger in handling the sex scandal could have been a lot more proactive. One of the things that we saw as the scandal unfolded is that they were not ahead of the curve as it relates to social media. And in a matter of seconds, the story continued to evolve and change and actually Nielsen stated that initially a lot of the words attributed to him in social were "good", "great, "winner". And they moved to "cheater", "adulterer", "phone texting".
HELLING: Tiger Woods built a brand on something that wasn`t true. A version of himself that wasn`t accurate. And every time that anybody tries to be somebody who they`re really not, it`s eventually going to come out. Your true self is going to get out there and if it goes so far against who you say you are, you know, there are going to be repercussions. And we see that happen with Tiger Woods.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Double dealing, double life, double trouble, and then some. But why go so far to protect one thing when the truth is completely the opposite.
Is the Tiger Woods scandal a cautionary tale about the dangers of turning your entire life into a brand, commoditizing yourself -- Dr. Jeff Gardere?
GARDERE: I think we`re looking at a person who had a very inauthentic life. Everything was about the brand, everything was about the smile, everything was about the play, and Tiger just didn`t know who he was. He had a lot of emotions inside, so instead he did what adolescents typically do. He acted them out and acted them out sexually. A lot of it was a manifestation of his confusion.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Dr. Robi, there`s something very inauthentic and dangerous about turning your personal, private life into a marketing campaign so that you can run around saying, you`re a family man, so you can get endorsement deals.
DR. ROBI LUDWIG, PSYCHOTHERAPIST: Well, right. I think that there`s a difference between creating this outside successful brand and having a healthy life. And if one doesn`t allow you to have the other, then it`s a very negative thing, as we see with Tiger Woods.
So we had this brand, his life was all about imagery. But really, what was going on underneath was, he`s suffocated and really not allowed to create who he really was. And so his real self is screaming out saying, "I need to be me," only the me that he was being in some ways was undeveloped.
GARDERE: And it was this orchestration that we see the brand being developed from a child, right to adulthood. When you`re a kid, you play the golf, you`re on Merv Griffin, you`re a perfect little boy. Now as an adult, you have the perfect life.
LUDWIG: The brand is a mess. So basically, it`s an outer imagine that he has to perform for the world. What if he, the real Tiger Woods, can`t live up to that mask, can`t live up to his brand? It creates a lot of conflict, depression. It could contribute to addiction. And I think that`s exactly what happened with Tiger Woods. The brand became more important than the person.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Persona and persona non grata. Facts are facts and Tiger did it. But what did it cost him? Coming up, what we learned.
JOHNSON: The consistent theme is that we have been sold a lie.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: A scandal erupts, and so does Tiger Woods` family. His sponsors, his so-called lovers who he seduced on so many levels, flee.
JOHNSON: The danger of turning a person into a flesh and blood commodity, it`s really when you package them as a product. I mean, you`re still a person, you`re human. And branding is really about a position of value. If you think about your grandmother, I mean there`s an association of memory you have with her. There`s a place that you hold her in your heart.
Any person has the ability to make a mark. And it`s not just a celebrity. We all have that opportunity. Tiger Woods` story is not very different from other celebrity scandals that we see, whether they be athletes, artists, politicians. The consistent theme is that we have been sold a lie, because there is a package and a presentation of who these individuals are that puts them in a great light, but leaves behind some critters in the dark.
HOWARD: Why did Tiger Woods change? Because he could. And the thrill of the chase was soon superseded by the thrill of the cover-up. He was able to orchestrate this elaborate, double life. A secret double life that he probably thought he could get away with forever. At the expense of human beings, loyal lieutenants, like his wife, Elin Nordegren -- the woman who gave him his two children.
HELLING: Whether or not Tiger Woods is a sex addict, only Tiger knows that. But one thing that`s interesting is that he had so much control over every other area of his life. He was so disciplined, but when it came to his sexual behavior, it almost controlled him rather than him controlling it.
JOHNSON: I absolutely believe there`s a fundamental lie in packaging an illusion. And part of what I believe makes what I do different is my approach to personal branding is a place of authenticity. Because there was a time when you could put a plastic image together and people would buy it, but only for a certain amount of time. And in this 24/7 news cycle, where everyone`s a reporter, everyone has a camera, something is going to get leaked at one point or another.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: And what`s the lesson here for all of us? It`s that honesty is always an option, even when we don`t think it is. Tiger has always said winning takes care of everything. Nike, the main sponsor that didn`t leave him, even used it in an ad to congratulate Tiger`s return to the top ranks of golf. But does winning really erase every misdeed? And if it does, what sort of message does that send?
Even with Tiger finding success again on the golf course is the problem with secret lives is we`ll never look at Tiger again the same, will we? Thanks for joining us.