A friend of mine needs some advice: last week, her brand-new boyfriend (we're taking days here, not even weeks) wrote an email list of gifts he wanted for Christmas, sent it to his mom, and CC'd my friend. To be fair, my friend did ask him to send her his Christmas wish list, but she never expected him to send the same list to his mother at the same time.
She's a little freaked out because she thinks this is a sign of him moving too quickly. On the flip side, he is very close to his mother, and maybe he just thought he'd kill two birds with one stone by sending one email instead of two. Then again, now his mom has my friend's email address. . .even though the two are weeks away from actually meeting face-to-face. So of course my friend asks me, "What do I do? Do I reply to both of them? Do I write him back at all?"
I must admit, giving her advice on this problem kind of stumped me. I'm torn between a couple of responses; to see what they are (and help me out!),
Potential advice A: Reply all with a short and sweet "Thanks for the heads up!" and let it go. This requires giving the guy the benefit of the doubt, which I'm not quite sure is the right move here, but I think it could be the way to go. See if his mom responds. Chances are, she knows her son well enough to know his intentions. Maybe he's even done it before. The only caveat: if she responds to you, you're stuck. You can't ignore an email from mom, which means being prepared for any kind of wacky proposal, from her asking what gift you're planning on buying him to suggesting going halfsies on something together.
Potential advice B: Don't respond to the email. Address it with him in person as soon as possible. Tell him it made you uncomfortable, and tell him why it made you uncomfortable. You'll have to tread delicately since I'm guessing he doesn't realize what a big deal this is to you. Explain that even though it might have been a to-the-point email, it makes you uncomfortable to be included on the same thread as his mother.
Potential advice C: Run. Fast. In the other direction.
Just kidding on the last one — but help a girl out! What's the best solution to the problem?
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