When Amy Taylor, 28, caught husband David Pollard, 40, cheating on her in a virtual world she filed for divorce straight away….
As I arrived home from the shops I skipped up the stairs to see my husband David.
But as I opened the bedroom door I froze.
There was my husband – naked with his arms around another woman.
“How could you?” I sobbed.
Guilt was written all over his face as he closed down the computer.
David wasn’t physically cheating on me – it was cyber betrayal in the computer game Second Life which we were both members of.
But it still broke my heart.
I first met David in a chat room in 2003.
He brought a smile to my face straight away – within weeks I knew he was my soul mate even though I had never met him.
When he suggested I visit him in his hometown of Newquay, Cornwall I jumped at the chance.
As I climbed off the bus I spotted David straight away.
I rushed over and threw my arms around him and he covered me in kisses.
As I moved in with David I had never been happier.
For a bit of fun we decided to sign up to Second Life, a computer game where players create an alternative virtual persona living in an online world.
I became Laura Skye – a glossy haired, six feet tall, size eight seductress and David became Dave Barmy a 20-something club owner with a washboard stomach.
Our characters would meet in the virtual world – they were just as in love as we were in real life.
In December 2004 as we ate Christmas dinner my heart started to pound as David suddenly got down on one knee.
“Will you marry me?” He said.
“Yes,” I cried throwing my arms around him.
But in May 2005 the cracks started to show.
I arrived home one day and couldn’t see David so I headed straight to the bedroom where I knew he would be on Second Life.
David was sat at the computer and on the screen I could see ‘Dave’ having sex with another woman.
I rushed out of the room and David ran after me desperately trying to explain.
“She means nothing. She is just an escort,” he said.
I loved him so much that I wanted to make it work.
On July 4th 2005 we got married at St Austell Register Office in Cornwall surrounded by our family and friends.
When we came home as husband and wife David suggested that are online characters should get married as well – it was so romantic.
Online friends from around the world were invited and the couple’s virtual pastor allowed them to add in a few special words of their own to the vows to make it even more personal.
As ‘Laura’ and ‘Dave’ said “I do” we held hands and smiled at each other.
Now we were married in real life and virtually – everything was perfect.
I had never been happier – and neither had ‘Laura’.
Then in April 2008 my world changed.
I walked into the bedroom where David was watching two characters on the computer screen – having sex.
I instantly recognised one of the characters as ‘Dave Barmy’.
“Not again,” I cried backing out of the room.
David immediately switched the computer off but this time there were no apologies.
“I’m in love with someone else. I haven’t loved you for over a month,” he said.
My heart broke as he told me about the other woman.
Her name was Modesty McDonnell – aka 55-year-old Linda Brinkley, from Arkansas, USA – and David had fallen for her onscreen and off.
They had met when Modesty had began working as a hostess in the nightclub that Dave Barmy ran.
“I’m going to see a solicitor – I want a divorce,” I said.
David didn’t try and argue with me.
Finding David cheating on me online was really hard to take, but him telling me he didn’t love me was the final straw.
Not only had he rejected me in virtual life but he had also rejected me in real-life. I could never get over that.
I think that people should be warned about Second Life. It starts as a bit of innocent fun, but it can really take over your whole life.
But I haven’t been put off by online games. I have now found love on and off line in another game, World of Warcroft.
We’ve been together for six months now and I am really happy.
I have brought ‘Laura’ an online divorce and she is busy rebuilding her life as a single woman – all I need is my offline divorce and then I can finally move on.
David says: “I don’t feel good about what happened.
“Amy never trusted me after she caught Dave with the call girl. Then I met Modesty – she is my soul mate now. We have never met but we are engaged.”
Linda (Modesty) says: “When we first met it was at a fancy dress night on the game and he noticed me across the room and said he felt something special.
“I felt it too, so it really was like love at first sight.
“We gradually built up our relationship and got closer until he proposed to me online for real. Of course I said yes.”