DEAR ABBY: I am being sort of sexually harassed, and I don't know what to do. I'm 15 and my brother, "Joey," is 16. We live with our mother. Our parents are divorced. Mom works, so we're home by ourselves in the afternoon after school.
Joey has a new friend, "Mike," who constantly makes sexually oriented comments to me. He has never tried to touch me, and I don't think he ever would, but the comments really bother me and I have tried to tell him so. He just laughs and says he means it as a compliment.
I have told Joey in private how much it bothers me and asked him to get Mike to stop, but he won't say anything. Joey is very meek and Mike is very domineering. Also, Joey has always had trouble making friends, and Mike is his only friend right now, and I think he's afraid of losing his only friend.
I stay out of the bedroom when Mike is here, but we live in a small apartment, so I can't really get away from him. But I don't feel I should have to hide whenever Mike is here. So far, I haven't said anything to Mom. Knowing her, I am sure that if I told her, she'd say Mike can no longer come over -- and that would be the end of the friendship. I don't want that. I just want the comments to stop. What can I do? -- EMBARRASSED IN BAKERSFIELD, CALIF.
DEAR EMBARRASSED: The next time Mike makes one of his off-color "compliments," tell him you don't like it and consider it degrading. Then tell him you want an immediate apology and his word that it won't happen again -- because if it does you will tell your mother, and he won't be welcome there again.
And if it happens again, follow through on your word. Your brother isn't "meek"; he's acting like a wimp by allowing Mike to disrespect you. And I have a strong hunch that Mike isn't coming over because he cares anything about your brother. I suspect he's there because he has a crush on you.