Published: February 27, 2022 | Updated: February 28, 2022
“I’m always honest and real” says Sarah as her TikTok divorce videos reach more than 700,000
Sarah Choudhury is used to being in the public eye.
A multi-award-winning chef, she’s been named as one of the UK curry industry’s biggest disruptors, and hailed as a leading female entrepreneur.
The 44-year-old has also been featured by Forbes, the Financial Times and Channel 4 for her ground-breaking work in the culinary industry.
Not afraid to speak out on issues, she’s built her reputation by challenging the inequality in the UK Asian cuisine industry.
But, more recently, Sarah, who lives in Bournemouth, has found a whole new audience by speaking out on something much more personal.
Taking to TikTok, she’s reached more than 700,000 people by discussing her divorce after nearly 21 years of marriage.
In total, Sarah has now posted 163 videos on the platform.
The first was on January 17, 2021.
The latest was in the last week.
Now she wants to empower more people to make positive changes and leave the fear of ‘what if’ behind.
Sarah – who goes under the name tiktoxicinlaws on TikTok – said: “Over the past three years, I’ve been going through a divorce.
“For a lot of the process, we were also in lockdown.
“As you can imagine, it was quite a scary and isolating time for me.
“I have four children and spent a lot of time keeping up appearances for their sake, but I was struggling.
“One night I couldn’t sleep, the court date for the divorce was coming up, and I was scrolling through TikTok feeling anxious and alone.
“I started to wonder how many other women were in the same situation as me, lying awake feeling alone,
“On the spur of the moment I started recording and uploaded my first video.
“I hadn’t really spoken about my divorce to people because in the community I grew up in, getting divorced is quite a taboo.
“It’s even more of a taboo for a woman to be divorced.
“It’s an old-fashioned view but, unfortunately, still quite a common one in some British-Asian communities.
“The night I posted my first video, I’d just had enough of keeping it all bottled up inside.
“I was fed up with feeling like I couldn’t, or shouldn’t, talk about what I was going through, and I didn’t want other people to feel like they couldn’t either.
“Even more than that, I didn’t want people to feel so afraid of getting divorced that they stay in a marriage they aren’t happy in, which I did for years.
“Since that first video, I’ve spoken about all manner of things,
“From adjusting to being a single parent, to him getting remarried, to dealing with solicitors.
“The response has been incredible – one of my videos got over 720,000 views, which is just unbelievable.
“My ex-husband doesn’t always like what I say online about our relationship.
“But I’m always honest and real, which I think is what my followers appreciate the most.
“We’re currently discussing custody and I’m more than happy to admit online in videos that, far from being the stereotypical bitter ex-wife who keeps him from his children, I want him to look after our children for a few days every week.
“The response I get from my followers makes it all worth it.
“Every day my inbox is swamped with people sharing their story and talking to me about what’s going on in their lives.
“I feel really proud that I’ve created a safe space where people feel they can share these quite personal details and value the advice I might have for them.”
After seeing how quickly her TikTok community has grown, Sarah now wants to expand and use experiences from both her personal and professional life, to help people have the confidence to change their situation.
She said: “I want to encourage people to take the leap, even if it’s scary.
“I don’t just mean leaving an unhappy marriage. I mean in every aspect of life.
“Time and time again, I’ve found that being afraid of the unknown can keep us from something brilliant.
“Too often, we know we aren’t happy where we are, but it’s safer to stay than to take a risk and see what happens when we make a change.
“We just need someone to give us that little push, even if it’s just a stranger on TikTok.
“I want to be that push for people, encourage them to stop being afraid to make that change, and show them that there’s every chance your life will be better than ever.
“It was scary going through divorce.
“Challenging the status quo of the British Indian cooking industry hasn’t always been easy either.
“But I know that stepping out of my comfort zone has always been the right choice.
“I’m the happiest and healthiest I’ve ever been – I’ve lost over 25 kilos in the past ten months.
“I’m the proof and I want to show other people that.”