Kayla & Kupono, "Addiction" danceI know. It's the Year of the Tiger, and today Tiger Woods's gave his long-awaited statement to the press in the wake of his sex scandal. Yet before I comment, I want to summon one of the most powerful and eloquent portrayals of addiction I've ever seen. The brilliant Mia Michaels, who choreographed the dance for SYTYCD, said, "I think everybody at one point will have or has had an experience with wanting something that's not good for you." Yes, and some of us have made a lifelong pattern of it. That's one hallmark of addiction. The repetition. The enslavement to the wanting. And the inability to let go, even when it hurts.
"Addiction" dance - Kayla Rodomski & Kupono Aweau, dancers; Mia Michael, choreographer
This dance reminds us people can be destructively, uncontrollably hooked on a person. People can be addicted to love as well as sex, as well as drugs, as well as alcohol. Some people use relationships as a drug. As a love junkie, I did this. I confused sex for love, and I entered into the territory of sex addiction through love addiction. This is often the portal for women, as Dr. Drew noted on that Oprah episode with cast from VH1's "Sex Rehab." Lots to chew on, and think about in terms of Tiger and this addiction. Like Elin, I also was drawn to sex addicts -- people who were never just satisfied with me. If that's not a prescription for psychic hellaciousness.
[Note: SYTYCD without Mia Michaels, without the choreographers on the judging panel, is greatly diminished for this viewer. The choreographers brought gravitas, passion and artistic vision to the discussion of dancers. Mia Michaels was the queen. No wonder she won an Emmy for this piece. I no longer watch SYTYCD. It got too big for its Danskins.]
Tiger Woods, victorious
On top of the world - flip side, "I felt entitled"
Check the above photo of Tiger. Then this one below from the press conference today:
Tiger Woods at press conference
1st public statement post-scandal, 2.29.10
Do yourself a favor, and watch the 13 minute statement. Whatever you think about this world-class athlete personally -- his statement is powerful. Someone on Twitter today asked me if he was in recovery-recovery or celebrity recovery-recovery. My sense is that he is ready to get better. I checked in with Benoit Denizet-Lewis today, and we both concurred. Tiger had come across vulnerable, sincere, and willing to take responsibility. There are no guarantees, of course. But what his public statement can do is crack open the cultural awareness about sex addiction. That's why it matters in the bigger picture of our health as a society. Further, his dedication to rigorous rehab can perhaps help educate people about the treatment and hope for sex addiction -- and other process addictions as well as substance addictions. When he brought up the spiritual dimension, and his training in Buddhism, I applauded him further. This aspect is key to true recovery, and often left out of the more general public conversation. Then he went on to say he had a long way to go. That, too, is crucial to convey to people -- that there is no quick fix here. In the end, I was simply moved by the emotional openness of his speaking. I believed. And that is the biggest testament of all. I say bravo to Tiger for putting a face and voice to this pervasive addiction. Perhaps it is not just the year of the Tiger, but also the year of deepening awareness of such wildly destructive process addictions.
What are your thoughts?