I work in consulting so I'm frequently at a client site all day long. It's embarrassing that my guy friend, who is pursuing me, sends me the eggplant emoji and my client sees it pop up on my iphone.

It's really inappropriate when it's done during work hours but I'm not sure how to tell him to stop it without ruining the good vibes between us. We meet about once every two or three weeks for dinner and drinks. Should I meet him in person and bring it up?

How can I ask a friend co-worker to stop sending a sex-oriented emoji without offending him?

  • 1
    I would rather not imagine what "the eggplant emoji" might be. It is always inappropriate to send very personal messages to people at work. Get another phone for work and leave the private phone switched silent in your pocket. Or block the private messaging service during work hours.
    – RedSonja
    Commented Dec 19, 2017 at 13:21
  • 1
    @RedSonja: (if you're not joking/teasing) only a real eggplant emoji :) it's what the use people do of it that makes it sexualty-oriented emoji.
    – OldPadawan
    Commented Dec 19, 2017 at 13:47
  • 4
    With an eggplant? I think I am getting old. Oh dear.
    – RedSonja
    Commented Dec 19, 2017 at 13:57
  • 4
    Non-IPS comment to look into: A majority of phones allow you to silence conversations for certain periods of time now. If talking to him doesn't completely resolve the issue, you could silence the conversation so the notifications don't pop-up during your work hours.
    – Jess K.
    Commented Dec 19, 2017 at 15:54
  • 6
    Disabling content-preview in notifications solves all kind of problems, including this.
    – Wilbert
    Commented Dec 20, 2017 at 12:41

3 Answers 3


I'd suggest "Hey, I really like what we have going on. I can't receive the eggplant emoji at work - my clients can see it and it can get embarassing." Don't overthink this - if you have a good relationship, he'll respect that boundary and not do it again. Every couple has things that they need to ask the other to do or not do.

  • 7
    emphasising the at work in I can't receive the eggplant emoji at work can bring the point across that you actually like it, were it not during work hours. Before saying this you should be sure that you are actually ok with such texts in the evenings. If not, you should try a different phrasing. +1 since this seems to be the case for OP.
    – kscherrer
    Commented Dec 19, 2017 at 16:29

I’ll expand on a technical solution, that is in itself an interpersonal solution regarding the relation between you and your employer/customer:

  • private phone at work = flight mode
  • check messages during your break
  • if iPhone needs to be on for professional reasons: switch off notifications for that app, so your phone won’t show incoming posts if you do not open the app in question

Moreover, you can always have a conversation with the eggplant-sender to take care of that interpersonal relation.

Personally, I think you should pursue my first suggestion and render your relation to the employer/customer professionally.


You can go through it with a humorous request like

-Hey would you stop that already? XD

-Eggplant emoji

-I'm serious. I'm at work dude, please don't send it while I'm working. It gets a little awkward if my client sees it.

I'm adding "XD" at the end to make it somehow fun. This should keep it friendly and smooth, nothing serious enough to feel like a killjoy. Now, if your friend keeps doing this you can engage in a more serious talk and request him to stop it and remind him that you've already asked him to quit it.

I hope this is of some help to you.

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