Heartache and heartbreak are hard enough to endure but imagine having to go through the loss of a relationship while the world looks on. Such is the high price of celebrity divorce and the latest victim is the beautiful and talented television chef, Nigella Lawson. Shocking photos of Nigella apparently being choked by her husband, Charles Saatchi, surfaced in the media following the June 9th dinner at Scott’s restaurant in Mayfair, London, where the incident occurred. Saatchi’s advisors urged him to humble himself and admit a public apology for the assault. Saatchi denied any wrongdoing, saying he never assaulted her and in fact, was actually removing mucous from his wife’s nose. Nigella was stunned by the admonition of “nose-picking” and his refusal to apologize. She left Saatchi and their family home in Chelsea.
Nigella Lawson and the High Cost of divorce
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The two sides continued to disagree about the pictures; Saatchi claiming it was just a “playful tiff” and Lawson hurt and humiliated by the public’s assumption of her as victim of domestic violence and her husband as her tormentor. Insult was added to injury on July 7th, when Saatchi announced his intent to divorce his wife in the media instead of directly to her. Lawson, who had been waiting for a public apology, was blind-sided by his cruel divorce announcement. Lawson and Saatchi have been married for 10 years; Saatchi has claimed that the couple had become “estranged” the last few years. Saatchi claims that he had no choice but to act publicly since his wife “failed to defend” him with a statement to the media. In fact, Lawson has remained silent at the advice of her publicist so as not to further affect their children. Lawson (53) and Saatchi (70) have three teenage children from previous marriages that they were raising together.In addition to the “he said, she said” controversy, Lawson and Saatchi will have to fight over $150 million in shared assets, including their $12 million Chelsea, West London home. Both brought substantial assets into the marriage. Charles Saatchi is worth $100 million from the high-profile, highly-successful New York advertising firm, Saatchi and Saatchi. Nigella Lawson is a celebrity chef, bestselling author and television star with a net worth of $15 million. By the time lawyers for both sides duke it out in court and attempt to untangle the shared assets, those net worths will be considerably less.But it’s not just a monetary cost to this celebrity divorce. Saatchi had grown increasingly resentful of his wife’s high-profile career that he helped established. It’s a common theme in celebrity couples; one partner becomes the higher earner or the more recognized celebrity and the other gets bit by that green-eyed monster, jealousy. In Nigella’s case, there is the public humiliation at the hands of someone she loves to endure. It seems that Saatchi is determined to do whatever he can to make her suffer in the media. And then there are the children; children always suffer in a divorce. It can be lessened when parents work together to keep it private and amicable. But it’s incredibly painful to have your lives dragged through the media. In this case, it is Nigella and Saatchi’s children that are paying the ultimate price.