A woman fell in love and married a toyboy who is 37 years her junior – after they met online and she mistook him for somebody else.
Gran-of-ten Isabell Dibble, 62, fell for Bayram Boussada, 26, a taxi driver, after he added her on Facebook in May 2019.
The receptionist mistook him for a man she had met while on holiday in Tunisia, North Africa, and she initially declined his online friend request – thinking he was “too young” for her.
However after they got chatting, she realised it was a different person altogether.
Although Isabell was skeptical at first, the pair hit it off, and she flew over to meet him in Madeira, Tunisia, in October 2019, where he proposed.
Smitten Isabell said yes and despite their 36 year age gap, she says she has never been happier.
The lovebirds tied the knot in January 2020 in Madeira, Tunisia, at a registry, and celebrated with around 100 guests, including Bayram’s family.
But now the couple are struggling to get Bayam to the UK amid the coronavirus outbreak and flying restrictions and they are not sure when they will next be together.
Isabell, from Dymchurch, Kent, said: “I know there are so many cons that go on so I had my doubts and I was skeptical.
“I read stories about women like this and I never thought I’d be in this position.
“He’s never asked me for money, he’s never asked me for anything.
“He doesn’t care if I move there or he comes here, we just want to be together.
“I have family here, children and grandchildren, so I don’t want to leave.
“We’re struggling to get him over here with everything going on, neither of us earn enough unfortunately, but hopefully things will turn around soon.”
Isabell was flying back from a holiday in Tunisia, North Africa, when a barista in the airport asked her out in May 2019.
She was flattered but declined his request because he was “too young”.
When she got back to the UK, she noticed his friend’s request but declined for the same reason.
However when she saw his profile again in her suggested friends, she decided to send him a request so they could ‘chat’.
Isabell said: “He was good-looking but a very young looking chap.
“He asked to add me on Facebook but when his request popped up, I said no because he was too young.
“When he popped up again I thought: ‘Why not add him?’
“It would just be to chat – it didn’t have to be anything serious.”
However as Isabella started messaging the man online, she quickly realised it was someone different who had the same name.
His name was also Bayram and he also lived in Tunisia, but the pair had never crossed paths until now.
She said: “I said: ‘We met in the airport.’
“But he said I had the wrong person, but he still wanted to chat.
“We started talking and things went from there.
“We literally spoke for hours and sometimes we were up till 3am on the phone.
“I knew there was something there before we met face-to-face.”
The pair started discussing marriage and Bayram invited Isabell out to visit him in Tunisia in October 2019.
She ended up staying for a week and met his parents, who helped set up a surprise proposal for Isabell.
She said: “It was like we’d known each other our whole lives.
“I know people say that but it really felt like that.
“He started calling me ‘his wife’ and I said if he really wanted to marry, he’d have to ask properly.
“A week later he sent me pictures of a tray of rings and asked me to pick one.
“When I arrived in Tunisia, I met his parents – who were incredible.
“They set up candles everywhere and got a cake and he proposed to me in front of them.
“My family were a bit shocked to begin with and told me to be careful, which is natural.
“Some came around quicker than others but everyone is fine now and happy for me.”
Isabell flew back over to Tunisia the following year and the pair tied the knot on January 2nd 2020.
She was joined by Bayram’s family but her family stayed in the UK.
Despite their age gap, Isabell says her family is supportive of their relationship.
She said: “My family were unsure at first, of course they would be.
“But their attitude is: ‘You had it tough in life, so do whatever makes you happy.’
“I lost three husbands and they know I need some excitement and love in my life.
“They know I’m young at heart and that he makes me happy.
“We got married in the local registry and had a reception just across the road from where his parents live.
“The wedding was incredible and his family are so supportive too.”
Isabell, who has three children and 10 grandchildren, says the pair on the same page about having kids.
Isabell said: “We’ve spoken about kids and I’ve already got three grown up daughters, so I don’t want anymore.
“For now, he’s happy not having kids.
“Plus he’s young enough that if he does change his mind, he’ll have time when he’s older to have them with someone else.”
The pair are now hoping to get Bayram across to the UK so they can start their married life together.
She said: “There must be so many people in our position with their partners stuck abroad and finding it hard to get a visa during the Covid-19 outbreak.
“It’s so difficult with everything going on at the moment, it’s a bit up in the air.
“Hoping it may be by June but who knows.
“I just can’t wait to get him over here so we can stay enjoying time together.”
Bayram, who works as a taxi driver, can’t wait to start his life with Isabell once the travel restrictions are lifted.
He said: “We spoke for about six or seven months before we first met.
“I was a little nervous to see her for the first time but I was excited.
“I don’t care about our age gap, I don’t think about it.
“Age is just a number and I don’t see her as an ‘older woman’, I just see her as a good woman.
“She just makes me so happy – I trust her and she trusts me.
“Isabell worried a lot about meeting my family but they’re so happy and welcomed her.
“Corona is making it hard but she is my wife, I’d wait forever, and soon everything can start again.
“She is so crazy but good crazy – I love her so much.
“Isabell is my gorgeous woman.
“She is my soul, my everything.”
Isabell’s daughter, Emma, 37, was dubious when she first found out about Baryram but is now fully supportive of her mum’s relationship.
She said: “I didn’t have a problem with my mum meeting someone online.
“People meet on Facebook all the time.
“If it wasn’t for that platform, she might never have had the chance to meet him but I was a bit dubious to begin with.
“You hear all sorts of stories about younger men meeting older women and they’re only after one thing.
“The thing that really worried me was that she was going to another country to meet a stranger.
“I was on the phone to her the entire time she went over there – she would do the same for me.
“Although after seeing their connection, I can see how genuine they are.
“He clearly loves my mum.
“She’s been through a lot over the years and had lots of losses in life so it’s really nice to see her happy.
“I’ve met him over Facetime when mum’s gone to visit but it’ll be nice to meet him in person.
“He is mum’s husband after all – so it’ll be nice to get to know him on a personal level too.”