Recipe for disaster

My fiance was cooking up some classic lines...

Published by: Polly Taylor
Published on: 8th November 2010

Dinner for two. Wine, candles, and… er, a nut roast being brought towards us by the waiter!
Okay, it wasn’t exactly my idea of a romantic meal either, but my new bloke Ben, 23, was a devout veggie, and I’d ordered it to impress him.
Thankfully, the evening went without a hitch.
Over dinner, Ben told me he was studying medicine, that he’d once trained as a chef…
‘I’ll rustle something up for you some time!’ he chuckled.
‘Sounds great,’ I grinned.
We’d met in the bar where he worked, and he’d served me a drink – but now I knew he could cook, I couldn’t wait for him to dish up something a little more impressive for me.
Instead, for our next date, he treated me to dinner at his favourite restaurant.
Even better!
Things were going so well, I decided to introduce him to my parents Angela and David a few weeks later. To my relief, they adored him as much as I did.
Four months later, cuddled up on the sofa in my flat, I was sure I’d found Mr Right.
‘You’re the only girl I’ve ever loved,’ Ben purred, eyes twinkling. ‘Marry me?’
‘Of course!’ I gasped, shaking.
Everything was happening so fast but, so what? There are no rules when it comes to love.
Now we were engaged, we needed our own place.
‘I can’t afford much,’ Ben sighed, as we scoured the newspaper for our perfect home. ‘Studying is costing me a fortune.’
Of course, his medical degree! Well, his education came first – he’d be on a doctor’s salary in no time, after all!
‘It’s fine,’ I reassured him. ‘I’ve got savings.’
I paid the deposit on a two-bed flat, and Ben vowed to pay me back when he could.
But as I helped lug his boxes into the new flat, I couldn’t help noticing something odd.
‘Where are all your books?’
Studying medicine, I’d have thought he’d have tons, but his boxes were filled with computer games, DVDs… no books.
‘I study online,’ he shrugged.
Typical that he’d be at the cutting edge, thinking books were so last year. Ben was one of the cleverest people I’d ever met, getting straight As at his posh private school. Not that we were allowed to talk about that…
‘Don’t mention private school in front of my parents,’ he’d warned, when he’d first told me.
‘Why not?’ I’d asked.
‘My brother and sister didn’t go… it’s a touchy subject.’
Once we’d settled into the flat, I started planning the wedding.
Then, one evening when Ben was at work, I needed to use his computer to research venues.
It was already switched on, and I noticed his Facebook page was logged in, open on his sent messages. I couldn’t resist taking a peek, scrolling through to read the messages we’d exchanged in the early days.
You’re the only girl I’ve ever loved, one said.
Hey, that email wasn’t one he’d sent me, it’d been posted to his ex. Okay, so it’d been sent before we met, but still – that was the exact same thing he’d said to me!
I couldn’t help feeling hurt by his lie. Was I overreacting?
Scrolling through his outbox, I discovered it wasn’t the first time he’d recycled that line, though. He’d said it to two, three, oh my God, four ex-girlfriends!
No big deal in itself, but if he’d lied about that, what else had he lied about?
Furious and confused, I waited for Ben to get home.
‘Hey, love,’ he called, arriving hours later.
‘Don’t “love” me,’ I spat, thrusting the laptop at him.
‘I said that because it’s what they wanted to hear,’ he pouted. ‘I really do love you…’
Suddenly, like a light switching on in my head, I could see everything clearly – and I had a nasty suspicion.
‘And the medical degree, the private education… I suppose that’s what you thought I wanted to hear, too?’ I blurted.
He nodded!
‘I don’t like the person I am,’ he mumbled. ‘I wanted to impress you.’
‘So you’re not studying medicine?’ I asked in disbelief.
He shook his head.
‘What school did you go to?’ I fired.
‘The local comp.’
Despite my outrage, I felt sorry for him… did he dislike himself that much that he’d pretend to be someone he wasn’t just to get me to like him?
‘I’m not even a vegetarian! And I’ve never cooked you a meal, because I’m not a trained chef.’
What…?! What a stupid thing to lie about! Seeing tears in his eyes, I softened.
‘I love you,’ I said, taking his hand. ‘You don’t need to make me like you, I already do!’
Angry though I was, I had to look at this logically. We were in love, planning a wedding – could I really walk away from all that?
So, he’d lied, but none of it was malicious, just told to impress me.
Bless him… I loved him no matter what.
‘I promise never to lie to you again,’ he whispered.
Desperate to prove I loved him for who he really was, I forgave him, sure our relationship was all the stronger now the truth was out.
Things went back to normal. We held our engagement party, and I carried on planning the wedding.
Then one night, as we cuddled up on the sofa, a Facebook message popped up on my phone – it was from someone called Hannah. I’d no idea who she was, but opening it, my jaw dropped.
I’m sorry to be the one to tell you this but Ben, your fiancé, isn’t all he seems… I read.
I shook my head, trying to make sense of all this. I made myself carry on reading the message.
After two months of sleeping with a wonderful guy, I found out a few hours ago he has a fiancé…
My heart broke as I realised my perfect man hadn’t changed at all. I’d discovered his biggest lie of all – he’d been cheating on me.
Well, what could I expect from a bloke who lied about everything, right down to him being a vegetarian?
Taking a deep breath, I turned to Ben.
‘Who’s Hannah?’ I asked, thrusting the phone at him. 
I wanted him to deny it, take me in his arms, tell me he’d no idea.
But he didn’t.
‘We only did it twice,’ he huffed. ‘It didn’t mean anything…’
‘Twice?!’ I yelled. ‘You slept with her?’
‘Yes,’ he said. ‘But I love you. I’m sorry…’
Love? Pah! Now I knew how easily that word tripped off his tongue, it meant nothing.
Running upstairs, I burst into tears. Stupid fibs I could cope with, but this…! I’d no choice but to end things with Ben.
I felt such a fool for forgiving him the first time. A leopard never changes its spots – in fact, Ben’s spots just got bigger, and uglier.
Now, I’m desperate to move on with my life. Trouble is, neither of us can afford to move out, so we’re stuck living together until we can.
If only I’d smelled a rat sooner – now I’m left living with one!

• Ben Roch, 23, says: ‘I did lie to Rebecca, and cheat on her. I regret all the lies. All I ever wanted to do was make her happy.’
Rebecca Thompson, 21, Cardiff, South Glamorgan