Baggage Check: How to Stop a Fast Forward



I forwarded an obnoxious email from my boss to a friend of mine, just to be able to vent and laugh about it. She sent it to a few of our friends without telling me. Now I’m concerned that it could really get out there, and I’m angry that she didn’t ask my permission. She thinks I’m overreacting, saying she only sent it to a few people who know me.Need an Arbitrator

I certainly don’t think you’re overreacting. Does your friend actually know how the Internet works? Virtually every email or text or blog entry that has ever brought someone down — Weinergate notwithstanding — has begun with a seemingly harmless circulation of it to “just a few” friends.

But showing her your anger isn’t going to do anything to help the problem. Write a respectful, breezy email to the mutual friend recipients, saying you hope they got a kick out of it but you’ve had trouble sleeping at night knowing that it’s “out there,” and you’d greatly appreciate their deleting it quickly. You so don’t need me to tell you this, but consider it a lesson learned, and hope it’s gone for good.

It’s Friendship Vs. Relationship
I’ve done so many favors for my friend over the years, from helping her get jobs to baby-sitting her son. Now she’s repaid me by starting to date my ex-fiance. He and I split up two years ago, and she says that since I’ve said that I’m over him, that I shouldn’t care. — Majorly Mad

It’s not up to your friend to determine what you should feel about your ex. But some would argue that it’s not up to you to determine who your ex — or your friend — should date.

You can let her know your feelings, but that’s different from telling her that she can’t do something. Write her a note saying that you can’t help but feel a bit bruised by their being together, but you know she’ll make her own choices. Then try to take a step back and spend some time focusing on other things. (The bright side: No more favors for a while!)

If you can manage to grit your teeth and ride this out — obviously, secretly hoping the relationship will last no longer than a particularly bad Metro delay — it might someday be just a blip on the screen, and your friendship, if you want it to, can survive.

Talk back to Dr. Andrea by leaving a comment below. To ask a question for Baggage Check in the Express print edition, e-mail baggage@readexpress.com or submit an anonymous question here.

Photo courtesy of Bendependent.com

Dr. Andrea Bonior writes Express' advice column, Baggage Check.
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Christopher Porter · July 4, 2011