I recently started dating someone whom I had been acquainted with for more than 15 years. We began seeing each other and he immediately "moved in" with little discussion about it; we lived together for six months.Things were going well, until I realized that he was receiving emails from women he met in chat rooms and other women from his past. After that, I guess I kinda "lost it" and became curious. While checking the history file, I came across some e-cards. He accuses me of "spying" and not giving him his privacy. I did not go into his email - I viewed the history on my computer. I had earlier told him that I had major issues with cheating due to my previous relationship with a cheater.He became upset, and after a couple of months, left my home. He has not come back or called for a couple of weeks - I expect he will return one day to retrieve his belongings. I am not proud of "spying" (as he calls it). In a way, it might have ended up hurting me. It allowed me to question his sincerity in our relationship and it also brought up some of my insecurities. Do you think that I did anything wrong? If so, should I apologize? Should I explain how I was able to view the e-cards-which will allow him to erase future e-cards? I hope that we can discuss this, but he does not communicate well and he is very secretive (an ex-cop). I do care a lot for him and would like to continue the relationship.

In this Internet-savvy century, the question often arises - if someone is chatting with women online while the significant other is asleep in the other room, is that cheating?

There are a couple of questions being asked here. First, did you do anything wrong? No. All you did was check the internet history on your own computer: there's absolutely nothing wrong with that. It's not like you hacked into his email or went out of your way to track down chat room transcripts. It isn't spying to check the history on your own computer. There isn't really a reasonable expectation of privacy there.

Second, is he cheating? Hard to say. The e-cards and chat room correspondence could just be innocent flirting. However, since you told him that you were especially sensitive about cheating, he could have been more attuned to that. It is a bit suspicious that he reacted the way he did when you confronted him, so it may be that even in his own mind he was cheating, even though chatting with anonymous women on the internet is kind of a gray area.

You shouldn't apologize, but if you really want to continue the relationship, you need to talk to him about these women he talks to online. Ask him for an explanation. Tell him it makes you uncomfortable. However, it might be too late. If he's moved out, the relationship is probably over, and this may be a good thing for you. Yes, it's hard to recover from something like that, but you should find someone who respects you, which this guy doesn't seem to do.

I'll throw the question out to the reading public, too. What do you think about flirting with people online if you are already in a relationship? Is it cheating?