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    Girls who grow up without fathers... 
    #1
    Bluelighter Lucky$trike's Avatar
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    do you think a girl that grows up without a father will be affected by this for the rest of her life?

    me: i haven't seen my father since i was 3 years old. i have self esteem issues, trust issues and it seems like i need constant reassurance from men (attention, flirting, etc). i feel that relationships don't last forever. there's no such thing as a happy family that lives in the perfect little house with the white picket fence. i have a tendency of being in long term relationships (2 years+) but i end up sabotaging them because of my own fear of being left. i need constant reassurance that i'm wanted and luckily i have a great boyfriend that does so, but i often find myself wanting to leave him just because i don't want to get left.

    people often see me as a confident, happy person but it's not really how i feel deep down inside. i feel like i constantly have to put on some type of facade in order to cover up how i really feel. i'm not an overly depressed person or anything. i have a lot of friends and i'm generally well liked. but i have a lot of anxiety and i can't help but wonder if it stems from me having a fatherless childhood.

    are there any other girls (or even guys) that grew up without fathers? how has it affected you, if at all?

    or does anyone have any information on this? or how to get/maintain a high self esteem? councelling DOES NOT work for me. i've tried multiple times and i always feel like they're trying to label me (depression, PTSD, BDD) and they never really fix the problem. maybe some of you can give me some tools as to fixing a damaged self esteem.

    thanks everyone
     

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    #2
    Bluelighter Lysis's Avatar
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    Yes, I think it's important for a growing child to see a good example of a mother and father. It doesn't need to be the biological parents, but examples of a loving relationship.

    My mother is a freakin psycho and through my 20's I had to realize that some of the things I saw her do everyday were not good practices.
     

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    #3
    Bluelighter Lucky$trike's Avatar
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    yea, i agree. unfortunately i watched my mom go in and out of bad relationships all my life so i never got to witness a true loving relationship.

    i have gotten better though. i used to be so quiet and not stand up for myself but now it's completely different. i used to always hide my feelings and opinions and now i freely say them and it feels damn good lol. i'm still working on myself though. there's still some holes that need to be patched up. mainly i just need to stop putting myself down and sabotaging my relationships. i kinda just want to go with the flow and learn to not worry so much.
     

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    #4
    Bluelighter Lysis's Avatar
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    ^ It took a lot of mental work for me. When you grow up with someone who is mentally ill, you just don't know that certain behaviors are completely insane. My dad would get a girlfriend and would completely disappear from my life.

    I truly think these things affected me, but now that I've been on my own for 10+ years, I have learned to change these behaviors and focus on more positive attitudes. Once you live on your own, you can more easily remove the toxic things from your life. Unfortunately, those were my parents.
     

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    #5
    My sister was fairly young when My father died. I know Im not the best role model but I hope I've been at least some what a good male influence on her.

    She seems to be a lot more reasonable than I was at her age but that could just be my age creaping up on me and I just see things different.

    A lot of girls grow up without fathers and I think a lot of them are effected adversely. But if you notice the problems it causes you, then I think its in your power to change and make solutions to your problems.
     

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    #6
    On Loveline Dr. Drew always recommended girls get counseling if they didn't have a dad.
     

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    #7
    I grew up without a father. I was raised by my Grandma and Mother and YES i think it affected me deeply. I'm not saying that raising a child without a father is bad but i think it does affect some kids.

    I am a lesbian but i don't think growing up fatherless made me a lesbian, i think i was just born that way but i can't say 100% if growing up fatherless had some hand in it. I just don't know.

    I feel that if i had a father or a father-like figure in my life i would be a completely different person than i am today. For girls, fathers tend to make their girls feel special and this makes a little girl more confident and they embrace the world differently. I could be way off on that. This is just a theory i have.

    My mom was living on the American side of Niagara falls and she met a Canadian man. They dated for a while. Well actually my mom tells me they just drank and fucked, they really weren't in a 'relationship'. During one night of drunken' sex and Buddy Holly playing in the back ground i was conceived (this was 1971 ok lol). And for some reason my mom took off. I don't 100% understand why she left and came back to Los Angeles, probably because LA is where my Grandma was and she needed emotional and financial help/support.

    When i was a toddler and my mom applied for welfare they asked her where my father was because they'd rather my mom get child support than be given welfare. Well, my mom... for some reason didn't want my father in my life and didn't want ANY help from him what so ever so she told them that she didn't know where he was. I always felt that if my mom had contacted my father and received child support things would have been a lot different, if he had been in my life even long distance i think things would be different. My mom wouldn't have been so financially troubled. Being in a bad financial situation stressed my mom out, she eventually had to get two jobs and than she started taking out all her stress on me-- physically, mentally and emotionally. I sometimes feel if my mom had accepted child support she wouldn't have been so financially troubled and therefor wouldn't have had to work two jobs and she wouldn't have taken all that stress out on me. And if she had let me in my life at some degree i would be totally different.

    My mom was so stubborn. She put her ego ahead of her child. Her ego was to big to receive financial support from my father, and i suffered because of that ego.

    I don't know.. maybe i am way off on that. My mom put me through hell when i was a child, specially between the ages of 11-16. I forgive her but I'll never forget. She's actually a wonderful person now and totally different from who she was when i was a child and we are close now. But, i have a lot of painful issues because of what she put me through and when i got in my mid 30's all this trauma started resurfacing and i keep meaning to get a Psychiatrist referral to help me come to terms with it all. I'm having problems with it now. It took geez... 25 years for me to start having problems with this.

    I also feel i wouldn't have been molested if there had been a father in my life. My mom wouldn't have had to move into that shitty, nasty apartment when i was 5. She had to move into this dangerous area and shity apartment because she couldn't afford anything else and i was exposed to some strange and funky people, two of whom molested me.

    Another thing that ticks me off is, my Grandma offered to pay rent for a niceyyyyyyyyyyyyyyr neighborhood and apartment but my mom was to stubborn to take my Grandma's help. My Grandma even told my mom "Please don't move into that bad area and nasty apartment, it's not safe for a child" And my Grandma was right. But, my mom was to god damn stubborn!!! Eventually we moved from there and in with my Grandma but i feel if i had my father in my life, or if my mom had accepted child support i wouldn't have been stuck in that god damn apartment where i was hurt.

    That being said, lots of kids do fine without a father. I think it all depends on the situation ya know. If i ever have kids i plan on doing it alone but i do want a father-like figure in my childs life.

    Ok, this is getting to long but god damn that felt good to talk about. OMG.. that really felt good. I've really never talked about all this before. This kind of felt like a therapy session.. even if no one reads this lol

    I'm sure people will disagree with me on this and that's fine. It's just my opinion, and opinions aren't always fact.

    Sorry, this was so long. I didn't mean for it to be. I'll probably get a few smart remarks but oh well.

    If you did read this, thank you for listening. I'm interested to see what other people say on this topic.

    And look, it's my 500th post. WOW. Well, 501.

    rpg

    RPG
     

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    #8
    Bluelighter Lucky$trike's Avatar
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    Thanks for the story :]

    But yeah, one thing I noticed in my relationships is that I look for a guy that treats me like a father would. That sounds kinda creepy but I mean...like a father is supposed to love you unconditionally and there's no such thing as "breaking up". I want nothing more than to have a relationship that lasts forever, but I know it's unrealistic. And, you know, fathers always think their daughters are the most perfect, beautiful little girls and they'll do anything to protect them. I always look for the guy that thinks I'm the best and that will fight away all the bad people in my life, which will also never happen. So it makes relationships hard for me and it causes little petty fights.

    I'm glad I can just recognize it and stop myself sometimes because I don't think I'll ever find a guy that can fill my fathers shoes.
     

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    #9
    Bluelighter TRPPNASS_DSCOMONKE's Avatar
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    yes, in my experience it has 100% messed with their life a bit. mind you these girls where only in their early 20s, so they may get over it as they get older.
     

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    #10
    Sorry to hear about your troubles, poppygirl. may god or luck be with you.

    You should still try to see a counselor. You could get a lot more benefit from regularly talking to someone that wants to help than making a good post on the net here and there.
     

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    #11
    This thread makes me sad... seeing as my daughters father wants nothing to with her.
     

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    #12
    YES YES and YES.

    was in a relationship with the love of my life for about 2years and due to her father abandoning her she and some other things, she had huge self esteem issues and trust problems. I tried my best to help her through them but she really should have gone to counseling. well towards the end of our relationship I was started a new job and getting seriouse about college again and she somehow got it locked in her mind i was leaving her behind so she kind of pushed herself away from me and eventually cheated on me... something i honestly though she could never do. her horrible self love issues and self esteem issues ripped us apart.

    now she emails me everyday saying how much she wants me back but you know it just cant work. she slowly just became this person who because of her father, deeply craves male attention to feel good about herself. I look at her and knows she hates herself, i feel so sorry for her and wish there was something i could do to help. she now realizes i actually wasnt this evil cheating guy she thought i was and is trying to go to counseling but its too little too late you know. its so sad for both of us, but life goes on.

    I guesse the point of this reply is to let anyone who knows they have these problems. You cant just ignore them. they will not go away, and they very well could be the end of something you truly love. dont wait until its too late. go to counseling. do it for the person you love, but most of all do it for yourself...
     

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    #13
    Bluelighter Lysis's Avatar
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    I read your whole post RoxiGirl. I am glad you feel better.

    Grimble, I am not as bad as your ex girlfriend but I used to be. I still need a lot of attention from men and if I don't get it I tend to push them away. I have worked hard not to be such an attention whore, but I do need to be someone's #1 or I will push them away.
     

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    #14
    Bluelighter Lucky$trike's Avatar
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    Yeah, I'm an attention whore as well. It's a really hard habit to kick. Drives my boyfriend crazy

    I'm only 20 years old though so hopefully it will go away with time.
     

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    #15
    Hey! You sound just like me! My dad left when I was about 5 and I saw him once when I was 9ish then not again until I was 20. At any rate, he hasn't been present in my life. The only difference between what you've said about yourself and me is that I don't get into long term relationships. My longest relationship was 8 months, the next longest was one month. I left my last boyfriend because I was afraid he was going to leave me and didn't want to be the one who got left. My parents fought a lot before the divorce so I have no idea what a healthy relationship looks like. I have self esteem issues too, but I think that's more from the way my mom berated me all the time.

    I'm in therapy working through this shit, and it's hard for me to watch shows or movies where there's a strong father-daughter relationship because I totally would've been a daddy's girl. I'm also anxious that people I care about don't like me, even when there's no reason to think so. And yeah, if a guy shows the slightest sign that he might be losing interest, I can freak out and turn pretty cold.



    So I know how you feel! *HUG*
     

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    #16
    I don't blame not having a father figure in my life for my issues. I had a terrible upbringing but to use that as an excuse well, in my mind that would be a cop out. And how could i move forward if i just accepted that?

    Could they have contributed to issues i have, sure? But what about people with those same issues who came from a perfectly stable family? What do they have to blame?

    Life isn't about living by the examples you see, life is about living how you choose to, and making the most of the tools you are given.

    Sorry my post kind of sounds cold when i can really actually relate to you and this is something i have thought before to come to the conclusion i have. I would seek therapy, it's done wonders for me and i think i'm silly for not putting my pride aside and doing it sooner.

    In therapy i'm in he doesn't focus on the past or label me with disorders, i'm just learning how to move forward with my life in the best way i can.
    Last edited by lady grey; 28-08-2008 at 03:53.
     

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    #17
    Bluelighter rant*N*rave's Avatar
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    First off, drop the damn attitude about counseling!!! I say that as nicely as possible... I had the same attitude for a long time, and it was disastrous for me. I went through a LOT of psychologists before I found the right one, but now that I have one that I love, I've made so my psychological progress it's ridiculous (I have PTSD as the result of childhood abuse and watching my parents' horrible relationship, and at age 23, I'm finally starting to function normally and have healthy relationships).

    But yes, I've found that every girl with "daddy issues" has problems functioning with other people, especially men. My best friend's dad left when she was very young, and it has plagued her to this day in pretty much all the same ways as other people have mentioned. My dad pretty much ignored me for a lot of my childhood, and as a result I have some stupid problems dealing with men (I demand a bit too much attention, etc.). And as I'm sure you can guess, I suggest you get counseling. Have you tried anything "alternative" like support groups or anything like that? They can be super beneficial, and for some people, better than traditional psychological counseling. Definitely keep trying to improve yourself on your own, as ultimately it's only you that can make changes, but having a professional to help you along the way can be infinitely helpful.
     

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    #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Lucky$trike
    Yeah, I'm an attention whore as well. It's a really hard habit to kick. Drives my boyfriend crazy

    I'm only 20 years old though so hopefully it will go away with time.
    I think with things so deep rooted like this is better not to have the go away with time attitude. It can really effect your life in big ways, and many times only becomes worse with time.

    im not tryin to be all docter phil on you though or project my bad experience n to you, i know not everyones the same. Just things like this dont just go away you know because there roots stretch so far inward in people.

    ive seen some of your posts in topics, your a very attractive girl and should be confident enough without having to chance someone elses feelings.
     

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    #19
    Bluelighter Lucky$trike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by punkybutt
    Hey! You sound just like me! My dad left when I was about 5 and I saw him once when I was 9ish then not again until I was 20. At any rate, he hasn't been present in my life. The only difference between what you've said about yourself and me is that I don't get into long term relationships. My longest relationship was 8 months, the next longest was one month. I left my last boyfriend because I was afraid he was going to leave me and didn't want to be the one who got left. My parents fought a lot before the divorce so I have no idea what a healthy relationship looks like. I have self esteem issues too, but I think that's more from the way my mom berated me all the time.

    I'm in therapy working through this shit, and it's hard for me to watch shows or movies where there's a strong father-daughter relationship because I totally would've been a daddy's girl. I'm also anxious that people I care about don't like me, even when there's no reason to think so. And yeah, if a guy shows the slightest sign that he might be losing interest, I can freak out and turn pretty cold.



    So I know how you feel! *HUG*
    Omg! I know what you mean about the movie thing! I can't watch any movie like that or I'll start crying. Or any movie where a father dies. Good thing my boyfriend understands my "daddy issues" and just sits there and makes me laugh at how silly I'm being. He even tries to steer clear of those movies.

    But yeah, you do sound exactly like me. It's crazy how people without fathers can be so alike...

    I'm glad you're going to therapy. I considering starting back up again. Thanks for your reply *hugs*
     

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    #20
    Bluelight Crew sixpartseven's Avatar
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    I think a person of any gender growing up without one or the other parent will have lasting effects on them and their relationships.

    It may sound cliche, but I know in my own experience, Ive noticed that what I really like about my current girlfriend is the "motherly" qualities she has, since I lost my mom when I was 12. Looking back, I notice the same thing in previous girls Ive been with.

    Also, I have a HUGE fear of being broken-up with/alone. Im constantly worried about it, and every little thing that goes wrong, I freak out and think its the end of the relationship. I think things like that come from feelings of abandonment by the parent in question. For me, I lost my mom and quite a few other people I really cared about, so Im just terrified of losing her (girlfriend) too.

    Every event in someones life is going to have an effect on that person, so of course growing up with a parent is going to have huge implications in how you live the rest of your life. The trick is learning how to fix those things, or learning to live with them.
     

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    #21
    Bluelighter Lucky$trike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by trancegirle
    I don't blame not having a father figure in my life for my issues. I had a terrible upbringing but to use that as an excuse well, in my mind that would be a cop out. And how could i move forward if i just accepted that?

    Could they have contributed to issues i have, sure? But what about people with those same issues who came from a perfectly stable family? What do they have to blame?

    Life isn't about living by the examples you see, life is about living how you choose to, and making the most of the tools you are given.

    Sorry my post kind of sounds cold when i can really actually relate to you and this is something i have thought before to come to the conclusion i have. I would seek therapy, it's done wonders for me and i think i'm silly for not putting my pride aside and doing it sooner.

    In therapy i'm in he doesn't focus on the past or label me with disorders, i'm just learning how to move forward with my life in the best way i can.
    Yeah, I was in therapy but the last therapist had this interesting way of using up our sessions. He did this thing called EMDR and it was the most ridiculous thing I ever had to do. It wasn't for anything that had to do with growing up without a father, it was mostly because of being sexually abused when I was 16 and I had PTSD.

    But anyway, he would basically make me think of something that hurt me or bothered me. He would make me think of that particular thing over and over again while he tapped on my knees for a set amount of time. I had a "safe place" in my head to go and a "garbage can" to throw away all the bad memories. I just thought this was crazy....how can tapping on my knees make any trauma in my life disappear?

    I tried it for a few more sessions and I finally gave up on the therapist after I told him I didn't like it and he insisted that we continued. So, I just stopped going. I was just really beginning to dislike going to therapy. I would like to start going again, but I would much rather have someone to talk to rather than be someone to try all these crazy experiments on
     

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    #22
    Bluelighter Lucky$trike's Avatar
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    Thanks everyone for your replies. It really makes me feel better to know that there are other people out there that feel the exact way I do. I always felt there was something wrong with me and this is a pretty touchy subject for me, but I'm glad I brought it up.

    I'll look into therapy...

    I'd love to hear everyone else's stories so keep em comin :]
     

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    #23
    Isn't it strange how i grew up without a father yet i don't long for a relationship with a man as it seems most of you do. I guess since I'm a lesbian it's different for me BUT, i long for a woman who will be protective and make me feel secure.

    You know how some of you look for a man who are like their father.. that's where i get confused. I didn't have a father so what do i long for??? I don't have a reference. This is confusing for me and i don't know how to explain it. I'll try better tomorrow to explain what i mean. I took my nightly soma so i cant articulate exactly what i mean.

    But not having a father was disastrous for me (like someone else mentioned in a reply) But, i can't blame all my issues on not having a father. Some of my issues are my fault. But not having a father affected me in many ways" Lack of confidence (Fathers make their daughters confident by making them feel special etc). Also i didn't have that stability that a mother and Father bring to the upbringing of a child. Also i am a loner for the most part. I mean, there were times on my life when i wasn't a loner but i am now... with the exception of having lots of internet friends and i think not having a father has something to do with that.

    I read an article/study on line that basically said that children who grow up without fathers have more problems than children who grow up without a mother, isn't that odd, i wonder why that is.

    Although i am a lesbian there are a lot of things i like about men. And there are things i am attracted to about men. I like how men are protective of their girlfriends, how they make their girlfriend feel safe, how they want to take care of their girlfriends ( I don't only mean financially) Sure, Lesbians do that with their girlfriends too but it's different somehow. I like how men make me feel safe when i am with them but woman don't make me feel safe.

    Like if i was in a relationship with a woman and we lived together.. and in bed at night they don't make me feel safe but the thought of laying in bed at night would make me feel so safe and secure. That really baffles me.

    I'm still very confused about all this. Which is why i need to get into counseling.

    Also i get along better with men than woman.Weird huh? In high school (20 years ago) i always enjoyed hanging out with the guys and that isn't because I'm a lesbian. I am a very femme lesbian so it's not because i feel like one of the guys. It's just... shit, i don't know.

    Anyone have any thoughts on this?

    You know how long I've wanted to talk to people about this and haven't been able to or was to uncomfortable. I often think, gosh i wish i could open up and talk to someone about all this with. Thank you very much for listening and not judging and making me feel comfortable opening up.

    Oh, one other strange thing Although i am a lesbian... as i get older i find myself more attracted to men. Yes, I'm still attracted to woman bu over the past few years i am finding more and more things i like about men. Does that make me bisexual, i don't think so because I'm not sexually attracted to men... maybe just a tad but I've become more emotionally attracted to men. Damn, I'm so confused lol.

    Sorry if this reply seems confusing and messy... when I'm on Soma i my typing is lacking and my expression is not clear and i dauncy.

    Ok, take care and keep the replies coming. I'd love to hear more of your stories.

    RPG
     

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    #24
    Quote Originally Posted by RoxiPoppyGirl
    Anyone have any thoughts on this?
    I'm glad you will try to find a counselor or a group to talk about things with. Good luck finding one you click with.

    Quote Originally Posted by RoxiPoppyGirl
    Oh, one other strange thing Although i am a lesbian... as i get older i find myself more attracted to men. Yes, I'm still attracted to woman bu over the past few years i am finding more and more things i like about men. Does that make me bisexual, i don't think so because I'm not sexually attracted to men... maybe just a tad but I've become more emotionally attracted to men. Damn, I'm so confused lol.
    Well I think it's pretty much impossible to know what is in the back of my head. But I do know that sexuality isn't so set in stone as most people imagine. For instance I have been able to have sex with a pillow, without any thoughts of human beings at all. So imo it is probable that you could have sex with anything if you're open to the experience.
     

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    #25
    Bluelighter Lucky$trike's Avatar
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    Does anyone else have trouble around holidays or birthdays?

    I only bring this up because it seems like every time a holiday or birthday rolls around, I seem to be depressed & angry. My birthday is coming up on Tuesday and it seems like my boyfriend and I have been fighting more than normal. I start most of the fights, and I know I'm being stupid but I really can't stop being angry and I don't know why. He understands though and he usually shrugs it off.

    Does anyone else have this problem? Somehow I feel it's related to this topic.
     

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