Friday, September 29, 2006

Terrell Owens: Truth or Consequences [EdMcGon]

The whole Terrell Owens suicide story stinks to high heaven, and his denials of a suicide attempt are not convincing me.

Over at the Dallas Morning News website, there is a revealing interview with Terrell's trainer, James Primm.

While Primm does try to confirm Terrell's story, he also gives some insightful comments which might lead one to see how Owens might have tried suicide:

"Primm said Owens underwent two traumatic events Monday involving his 7-year-old son and his fiancée, a woman he has dated for three years.

Owens' son, from a previous relationship, celebrated his birthday Monday, Primm said. Owens was distraught, he said, about not being able to be see the boy, who lives in California.

"He wanted to get together with the boy," Primm said. "But the boy could not come here, and Terrell could not go there."

Then hours later, a woman whom Primm described as Owens' fiancée broke off the relationship. Primm declined to give the woman's last name but said she and Owens had been dating for three years. She also lives in California.

"That's been coming on forever," Primm said of the breakup. "She's not a bad girl. She's cool, she's fine. He said, 'Can I take a break from the engagement?' And she said, 'No, let's just put a stop to it.' And that was a complete surprise to Terrell."

For you amateur psychologists out there, here is the meat of the story:

"...Primm says that [he and Terrell] have forged a father-son-like bond that Owens seems to need. Growing up in abject poverty in rural Alabama, Owens was raised by his mother and grandmother and, according to Primm, has long been in need of a dominant male figure in his life.

...Owens "doesn't have many friends," said the trainer, who contends that the public and news media have long misperceived a man he considers "a gentle soul" and a "caring, highly sensitive" individual with a fragile psyche.

"He's a good person," Primm said. "A very good person."

The other side of this is Kim Etheredge, Terrell's publicist, who first found him during the incident in question. During Terrell's press conference Wednesday, Etheridge denied it was a suicide attempt (although everything she told the EMT's the previous night would lead one to believe it was), and added, "Terrell has 25 million reasons why he should be alive," a reference to Terrell's contract with the Cowboys. So the only reason Terrell has to live is his money? Or perhaps that is the only reason Etheredge sees for him to live, especially since he is her only client.

I don't know if Etheredge is exemplary of the rest of Terrell's entourage. If so, you have a man who is "highly sensitive" with a "fragile psyche", and is surrounded by people who love him strictly for his money. That has "Mike Tyson" written all over it.

Even if Etheredge is not exemplary of the rest of the people in Terrell's life, you have to wonder why she was there for him and others weren't. It may just be a coincidence. Or it may be that she carries a high status with him, in which case I feel sorry for him.

When you consider how many people stand to lose a lot of money if Terrell Owens doesn't play football, including Etheredge and Drew Rosenhaus, T.O.'s infamous agent, and you consider that a suicide attempt could cause the Cowboys to cut strings with T.O., then you can imagine how Etheredge went from trying to save T.O.'s life to denying it was a suicide attempt within the span of 24 hours.

The conspiracy theory goes like this: Etheredge comes upon what she thinks is a suicide attempt by T.O. Etheredge knows she has to save her "cash cow", otherwise she goes back to being a nobody with nothing. Ok, she saves him. Then she realizes how a suicide attempt could impact her client's career, and the spin begins.

Normally, I don't go in for conspiracy theories. But something has always struck me wrong about Terrell Owens. People don't become complete jerks for no reason. Terrell Owens strikes me as someone who is looking for love, but doesn't know how.

Terrell Owens has trouble with women because he had no fatherly role model from which to draw experience. Because of that, he mishandled the relationship with his fiancée, and lost her. Then he took it much harder than anyone expected.

Until Terrell Owens faces the truth about himself and his own inability to give love, he will continue to pay the consequences for his inability to get love.

But this is all speculation on my part. I could be wrong, and T.O. may be the completely selfish jerk he seems to be.

UPDATE: Apparently, T.O. is not as close to his trainer, James Primm, as Mr. Primm would have you believe. At least not anymore, according to a Dallas Morning News report today:

"James "Buddy" Primm, Terrell Owens' personal trainer, said Thursday that the Cowboys wide receiver had relieved him of his services and was no longer speaking to him.

In a telephone conversation with The Dallas Morning News, Mr. Owens acknowledged as much and said Mr. Primm "had no business" discussing details of his private life with the news media.