When Is It OK To Look at Your Lover's Emails?

Through the years, I've had several friends tell me they broke up with someone because it came to light that they were cheating. "And how did you find out, pray tell?" I always wonder, to which they generally respond, "I looked at their emails!" Duh.

But is this pervy prying practice really OK? Does being someone's partner mean you have an automatic right to do detective work into their private exchanges, just because you suspect some wrongdoing? Are you--as a hurt lover--somehow ethically allowed to crack their codes and dive into their secret emissions, then confront them with the naked truth, whether it be in their texts, diaries, or written on a bathroom wall?

I don't think that's the way to go--and wiretapping's not recommended either--but how DO you find out what's up when you sense your lover's straying and they won't cop to it? Should you spring for a professional investigator?

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