Rachel Uchitel is ready to live her best life.
Tiger Woods’ former mistress sat down for a “very long, grueling day” of interviews for HBO’s “Tiger” documentary to clear her name 10 years after their infamous affair.
“I really took the opportunity to be able to clear up any misconceptions that people had about … who I am and the situation because people use me as sort of a brand for … the other woman,” Uchitel, 45, told Page Six in a recent interview. “And I think that it’s very interesting that I come off as this very threatening, horrible person, and I feel like I have had to live like a discount version of myself for 10 years, and it’s been a really hard way to live.”
Uchitel became known in the press after the September 11 attacks when a photo of her clutching a picture of her fiancé was splashed across newspapers. She made headlines again in 2009 when it was uncovered that she had a relationship with Woods, who was married to Elin Nordegren at the time.
“And for 10 years, I’ve had to live with such hatred of people and it still affects me to this moment and I think that’s a really unfair thing for women to have to go through,” she said. “And it’s something very uncomfortable that I think people not only in the public eye, but in a private eye, go through all the time and I think that people can really empathize in that situation and I think that there are plenty of people that understand that concept of something happens and then you get shamed for it and you continually get shamed for it.”
Uchitel said she now wants to move into the “second chapter of life and be able to have my own comeback and my own fresh start and I want people to have a little bit of empathy because I’m just like everybody else and I’d like to sort of live my life again.”
Uchitel, who said her friends would describe her as “really resourceful,” “really generous” and “fun,” told us that she’s working on a book about her experiences. She is also working with Transcend rehab centers by giving speeches on her own relationships and the “love addiction she suffered through.”
“Obviously people are captivated by hating me,” she said. “Maybe they’ll be a little bit captivated by loving me for something else if they just give me like five minutes of a chance to get to know me.”
Uchitel’s appearance in “Tiger” airs on Jan. 17.
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