Tiger Woods' recent public apology came with much criticism, as the statement was issued without the opportunity for the media to ask questions. In a recent article published by ESPN, Sport Psychologist Mitch Abrams, author of Anger Management in Sport (Human Kinetics, 2010), explained that Tiger Woods' strategy in handling the apology was well thought out. "At least this way no one can stump him – he'll only be saying what his PR people have already vetted."
Abrams challenges the public to step back and remember that they are not the ones that deserve the apology – it is his wife and family that should be considered. In his Psychology Today blog as well as in his book, Abrams emphasizes that athletes are real people, and must handle their actions and attitudes as real men and women, rather than as the super humans they are portrayed as by the media.
“And we will wait and watch for any sign that he and any other superstar athlete may be a little less than human. Why? Probably because even being human is too much to ask. The cameras will be waiting and the reporters will be baiting, to find the next time that an athlete falls from grace...”
Mitch Abrams, PsyD, is a clinician administrator for University Correctional HealthCare/UMDNJ, where he is responsible for the delivery of mental health services for 6 of the state's 13 state prisons. Dr. Abrams co-coordinates the forensic track of UMDNJ's predoctoral psychology internship and has been involved with several aspects of advancing the quality of mental health services in prison systems. He is a clinical assistant professor in the department of psychiatry at UMDNJ/Robert Wood Johnson Medical School and has held adjunct faculty positions at Brooklyn College, C.W. Post, and Fairleigh Dickinson University. Since 2000, he has been in private practice providing sport, clinical, and forensic psychology services.