I made my Steve take a daily cheat test to prove he’d been faithful. But could I get him up the aisle before he cracked?
By Debbi Wood, 43, from Leicestershire
My fiance Steve wrapped his arms around me as we settled down in front of the telly, but soon my smile had turned to a grimace.
We were watching a football game and the camera had fixed on a pretty blonde woman in the crowd.
“Do you find her attractive?” I blurted out, before I could stop myself.
“No, sweetheart,” he said, on cue. “I only have eyes for you.”
I didn’t believe him but I’d had a brainwave. Reaching for my mobile, I began scrolling furiously.
I told him: “I’ve downloaded a lie detector app. Put your hand on my phone.”
Steve groaned, but he did as I said.
“Do you find the girl on the screen attractive?” I repeated.
“No!” Steve said again. I could see a bead of sweat glistening on his forehead as we waited for the result. After a few seconds, there was beep.
True, the screen read, and Steve breathed a huge sigh of relief.
I said: “You’ve passed – this time.”
There’s a reason I’m so scared my man will stray.
You see, I suffer from an extremely rare illness called Othello Syndrome. It causes morbid jealousy and means I’m always worried Steve is eyeing up other women.
My paranoia began when I discovered Steve had been seeing another girl around the time we’d got together.
Although he’d called things off as soon as we became exclusive, the seed of doubt had been sown in my mind.
In time, we moved in together and I was glad I could keep an eye on him but every time he went out, I came out in a cold sweat.
What if he sees a girl he fancies more than me? I’d think, my heart hammering.
Before I knew it, I was checking his emails and bank statements every day for evidence of cheating.
I put child proof filters on his phone and laptop so there was no way he could download any racy pictures.
But there were scantily clad women everywhere. One night, we were flicking through the channels when an advert for a women’s razor flashed up.
Anger tore through me as the model grinned seductively and flaunted her long, slim legs.
“You’re enjoying that advert a bit too much,” I thundered. “From now on, you can’t watch any programmes with women in them.”
But even then I wasn’t convinced my handsome hunk only had eyes for me, so I bought an old fashioned lie detector.
Bless him, Steve rarely complained, even though I interrogated him every time he popped to the shop for a pint of milk.
Hooking him up to the machine, I’d ask: “Did you fancy the shop assistant?”
“No,” he’d reply, trying to stifle a sigh.
Soon, my condition had got so bad the doctors prescribed anti anxiety medication and told me I needed therapy.
But he counted out all my tablets and came with me to my appointments. One day, we were messing around on the computer when he dropped to one knee.
“Will you marry me?” he grinned.
“Yes!” I squealed.
I began planning. I picked out a gorgeous, floor length white dress with thick straps and Steve chose a grey suit.
We booked the local registry office and planned a big meal at a local hotel for afterwards. Then, we sent out texts to friends and family and told them to save the date.
Soon, though, we had a problem. We’d been told we had to move out of our house and we didn’t have the money for the wedding and the move.
I’ll get Steve down the aisle somehow, I promised myself.
I realised I could cut costs by trimming down the guest list and having the reception at home. Plus, fewer guests meant fewer women for Steve to eye up.
Sadly, my old lie detector got lost in the move but my new mobile phone app meant it was easy to keep track of Steve, wherever we went.
By now, he’d started to shun nights out with his mates in favour of cosy evenings in with me, so he was rarely out of my sight – but there was one thing I had to make clear.
There’s no way I’m letting him down the pub the night before the big day, I thought. What if his friends get him a stripper?
“You can have a best man,” I said. “But definitely not a stag do.”
Steve shifted nervously, his eyes fixed on the ground.
Finally, he said: “Actually, there’s something I want to ask you.”
“What’s that?” I asked.
“I don’t mind about the stag do,” he said. “But I wondered if I could have a best woman instead of a best man.”
My jaw nearly hit the floor as I glared at him.
“It’s not what you think,” he went on. “I’d like to ask Sian.”
I felt my expression soften. Sian was a lesbian, so at least she wouldn’t be trying to get her claws into my groom.
“Okay,” I agreed.
I asked my mates Kerry, 36, and Joan, 59, to be bridesmaids and in the weeks before the wedding, I had extra therapy to help me trust them around Steve.
The night before the big day, they came round to the house and we painted our nails while I sent Steve off to watch telly with his parents.
Not quite the stag do he’d imagined, but he took it on the chin.
“As long as you’re happy,” he told me, kissing me goodbye.
The next day, Kerry and Joan helped me into my dress before we headed to the registry office.
“Beautiful,” Kerry smiled, handing me my flowers.
As the wedding march started up, I caught sight of Steve standing at the end of the aisle, all dressed up in his suit and I almost started drooling.
My heart skipped a beat as I thought: I’m so glad I hung onto my hottie.
As the registrar asked if we promised to be faithful to each other, a grin spread across Steve’s face, but I wasn’t smiling.
I said: “You’d better not be lying!”
We were pronounced man and wife and the registrar presented us with our marriage certificate.
I snatched it off her and said: “I’ll keep a hold of that.”
Back home, we mingled with our guests and posed for photos but there was something I still had to do.
Stealing Steve away, I took him into another room where I whipped out my phone and logged onto my lie detector.
“Just because we’re married doesn’t mean your eyes won’t wander,” I said.
I grabbed his hand and placed it on top of my mobile and tried to come up with the name of the most beautiful celebrity I could think of.
“Do you find Holly Willoughby attractive?” I asked him. “She looks like your type.”
“No,” Steve replied.
We both stared at the screen for a few seconds before we heard the familiar beep.
“True!” I exclaimed, planting a huge smacker on his lips. “Maybe you do only have eyes for me after all.”
Now, I’m slowly learning to relax as Steve and I settle into married life.
I still consult the lie detector when I have the odd wobble, but I’m beginning to realise just how devoted Steve is.
After all, not many blokes would have survived my interrogations!
But Steve’s not just a hunk – he’s all heart, too. Is it any wonder I want him all to myself?
Steve, 31, said: “I can say with one million percent certainty that I’ll be faithful to Debbi for the rest of my life. I love her to bits. Despite everything we’ve gone through, it’s the best relationship I’ve ever had.
“I was happy not to have a stag do because I knew how anxious it would have made Debbi and it just wasn’t worth it. Instead, I watched TV with my mum and dad but I didn’t mind.
“I had to try not to look smug when I passed the lie detector test on our wedding day. Debbi thought I’d fancy Holly Willoughby but she’s not my type. I only have eyes for my beautiful wife.
“Debbi goes through so much – I actually think she’s an inspiration because she hasn’t let Othello Syndrome beat her. Standing by her is the best thing I’ve ever done. We’re perfect for each other.”