Speaking with PEOPLE and Entertainment Weekly‘s Editorial Director Jess Cagle for the latest edition of The Jess Cagle Interview, O’Connell, 42, remembers the moment that he first met — and fell — for the woman who would become his wife of nearly 10 years.
“I met my wife and her ex John Stamos at a party when they were married. I remember thinking, ‘Wow. This girl is really beautiful and funny.’ I talked to her the whole party. My wife remembers that party and remembers us clicking. We clicked. My wife and I clicked. We clicked the first time we met,” O’Connell admitted about meeting Romijn more than a decade ago at a Maxim party.
Although he had instant chemistry with the former supermodel, O’Connell denies that anything untoward happened while she was still married to the Full House star, 53.
“Obviously, she was married, and I know shenanigans go on, but no shenanigans happened. But we clicked. Day one, we clicked,” said O’Connell about his Romijn, who finalized her divorce from Stamos in 2005. “I want to tell you this about my wife, and my wife says it funnier than I do, but we met. We started hanging out. I came for a sleepover … and I never left. That’s the truth. We just clicked.”
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The Crossing Jordan alum, who now shares two children with Romijn — 8-year-old twin daughters, Dolly Rebecca Rose and Charlie Tamara Tulip — said that he knew instantly that he and his bride were meant to be.
“When you meet the one, you just know. It just happens. It happened pretty immediately. It happened immediately,” he said.
The pair reconnected later on at another Maxim party when she was separated from Stamos, and they married in 2007.
“I hung out with her pretty much all day and her friend. We went out to dinner that night, a group of us. It wasn’t any kind of date. Then her friend, a guy said to me, ‘Take her phone number. I think she wants to call you.’ I was working it. I got her phone number, and I called her, and then we met up after that Vegas trip back in Los Angeles. We went out,” O’Connell recalled. “My wife was right. We had a sleepover, and I never left. It was great.”