I think my boyfriend is flirting with my mom and it’s freaking me out. Sometimes they even email each other, and it makes me jealous. He’s naturally flirty, though, and my mom loves attention, so maybe I’m just reading into it. On the other hand, it’s not like we’re kids. My boyfriend and I are in our 30s and my mom is on the young side. They should both know better. Should I say something?
Let’s start with your boyfriend, since he’s easier to deal with. (I’m going to assume that you’re not normally the jealous type who flips out and wants to tear a girl’s hair out for accidentally looking at your boyfriend.)
Something he’s doing is skeeving you out, and he should stop. So it’s perfectly reasonable to say, “It makes me uncomfortable when you tell my mom her ass looks good in those pants.” Or, “I don’t like it when you lick your ice cream cone that way and then wiggle your eyebrows at my mother.” Or whatever specific thing he’s doing that suggests he’s flirting.
If he’s nice and understanding about it, and reassures you that he’s only saying those things and emailing her because he loves YOU and just wants to get on her good side for YOUR sake, then great. If he flips out and accuses you of being ridiculous or paranoid or controlling or jealous, you might want to think for a second about this: he’s a douche bag, he doesn’t care about your feelings, he’s being wildly inappropriate, and you should break up with him.
As far as your mom is concerned, you can’t really get rid of her. So do one of the following: 1.) Be passive-aggressive and make a joke about it, then glare at her and hope she gets the point and knocks it off. 2.) Don’t say anything, swallow your anger and resentment, and eventually when your head explodes and you have to go into therapy, talk about it there. 3.) Be firm but gentle. Tell her you don’t like it when she makes kitty claws and meows at him, or asks him if he’ll rub suntan lotion on her back and says, “I wish my boobs were on my back.” And whatever her response to you is, just be pleasant and ignore any insistence that it’s all in your head.