Dear Abby:

I'm having a problem with a boy at school. Somehow he got my home phone number and started calling me.

I don't mean he called once or twice; he called once or twice EVERY HOUR for weeks. It got so bad I'd make excuses to get off the phone or have my parents tell him I was out.

That didn't stop him. He'd call back every hour or so until midnight or 1 a.m. -- when my folks would take the phone off the hook.

Finally, we paid money to get call blocking and blocked his house number. Then he bought a cell phone and started doing the same thing. We blocked that number, so now he goes over to friends' houses and calls.

I'd have no problem telling him to stop, but he has a very big mouth and every time someone disagrees with him, he calls them a racist. I feel helpless for fear he'll spread rumors about me.

Trapped in Louisville

Speak up and tell him to stop calling already! If he persists, your parents should first notify his parents, and if that doesn't work, then notify the phone company and the police.

What he is doing is called stalking. Your parents should be prepared to get a court order if necessary, because the boy appears to have an unhealthy fixation.

Please do not worry about his accusing you of being a racist. People who know you will know it's not true.

Dear Abby:

My dream is to go to college and major in either English literature or child psychology. However, I'm wondering if I should, because no one in my family has gone to college and I'm the third youngest. I don't want to look too ambitious or put a damper on my older sisters' and brothers' lives. I'm afraid they might say to themselves, "I am worthless. I didn't go to college."

Should I aim for college or not? I'm only in ninth grade and would appreciate some good advice.

Depressed About the Future

Wenatchee, Wash.

Since your dream is to complete your education, then you should go for it. Do not let the fear of what your siblings "might" think stop you. They have chosen the paths they have taken. I'm sure your family will be proud that you were the first to get a college degree. And who knows? If you complete your education, it may inspire some of them to do the same.

Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Write Dear Abby at www.DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, Calif. 90069.

(c)2004, Universal Press Syndicate