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Divorce - Break up? - peer support forum


 

Divorce - break up?

Do you suffer from a divorce or break up? Are you doubting wether or not to break up or stay together?

 

For a lot of people it's helpful to write down and share their story. This open forum is a great place for:

 

  • Getting things off your chest.
  • Reading the stories of peers.
  • Connecting with peers and responding to stories.

 

Read the stories of other people about divorce, breaking up or staying together and share your story.

 


+ Share my story




Story 1 - Feeling happy in a relationship

We were together for 7 years. The last 2 years we kept ending up in the same discussions.

I had a very strong feeling that I was still trying to make it better then it was, while he was only busy with himself. Looking back, I saw that I had lost myself because I was focusing on us and on him too much.

So when we kept ending up in the same loops, I felt hopeless and at the same time I realized "I have to get out" and "we have to go our own way, because we do not make each other happy anymore."

It is important to me that you make each other stronger and that you feel happy.

At that point I was not ready yet to break up, but I moved out. We first decided to not live together anymore. And when that was actual, I could feel that it was not enough and that we had to let each other go.


E

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Hey E,

I admire you and the way you write about your broken relationship. It doesn't seem easy to me to end a relationship that lasted seven years.

It reads like the distance you took by moving into your own apartment, was a good choice. I am happy about that.

I also think it's inspiring. So you can also end a relationship in an investigating way. I think that's very respectful. Hopefully it was also good for your partner.


For E

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Story 2 - I was the one to break up, but still love sick

A few years ago I broke up with E. That was my choice. Still, many years later, I have a hard time dealing with it. Not because I want her back or that I regret it, but because I find it hard to see that I hurt her. And because it hurt me too.

Even though you are the one to break up, it doesn't mean you are not love sick. At least in my case.

R.


R

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Story 3 - Broke up because I was unhappy

After feeling unhappy in the relationship for a long time, I broke up a few months ago.

This was very unexpected for her and she blames me for not giving a proper reason. It's true that I chose to not give any examples, I just shared that I started to feel unhappy in the relationship and that it didn't feel safe/closeby enough for me anymore to give more feedback.

This was also because on previous feedback she did not respond very constructive, she gave it all right back to me. I let her know that I would like for her to look a bit more critical to herself, but that is too abstract for her.

Is an unhappy/unhealthy feeling in a relationship enough reason or is she right that it was rude to just keep it at that?


Anonymous

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Dear Anonymous,

I think you can leave it at that. Your explanation can be interpreted as something to discuss about. And when I read your story, it doesn't seem like that's what you want.

I can imagine it is quite something to take for her and that she hooks in like that. But that can also be a way to try and change your mind.

So in your position I think I would leave it like this. I wouldn't say it's rude, just clear, honest, straight.


To you

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Story 4 - Stay with family or allow the new love to happen?

I am a 35 year old woman. I am married and am the mother of three young children.

I have always been happy in my relation. But a while ago I fel in love with another man. He also fel in love with me. The feelings are very strong.

This puts me in a difficult position and I don't know if I want to divorce or if I want to stay with my partner and my family. This is of course a major decision. On one hand I don't want to give up my family and my relationship. But on the other hand I also want to allow this new love to happen...


Anonymous

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Falling in love happens to everybody. Also me. I learned for myself that this is a signal that I miss something.

What is it in the person I fell in love with that attracts me? Do I miss that in my partner? Or did I forget to give that to myself? Why do I need it? Do I like to feel special? Why do I need that from somebody else?

These are the questions I ask myself when I fall in love. It is very clarifying. Acting on those feeling is for me a bridge too far.


Anonymous
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Falling in love happens. You cannot help it or prevent it from happening. It used to be fantastic to be in love and it still is, now that I am married.

What it is about, when you fall in love, that you make the right and wise decisions.

But the game is so fantastic and so seducing. Many people have the feeling to finally feel alive again, the attention from the other, the butterflies.

Well, try and stand that. Many people cannot and that is not so strange.

I think it is important that you are 100% open and honest to your partner. And make sure you have loving people around you to support you when you fall in love again.


Anonymous
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I think (almost) everybody every once in a while falls in love with somebody while you are in a relationship/marriage. It is about the choices you make at that point.

You can always fall in love with somebody else, even when you love somebody.


Anonymous

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Story 5 - Choose between two fantastic women

I am a 45 year old man and live together for 20 years now with my girlfriend. We don't have any children. I have a good life. Also with my girflfriend I have a good life and I love her deeply.

Still I fell in love with another woman, and she with me. I feel intensly in love and it feels wonderful to be with her. I also feel a strong connection with her, I allow myself to be vulnerable and open up. She wakes up a strong passion in me.

Now I have to choose between these two fantastic women. Do I choose for a safe, beautiful and good life, or do I choose for the unknown and the passion?


Anonymous

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I am in similar situation. It eats me. Actually I would like to have both women, because together they are the ideal woman. Very curious to the replies.


Eden

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Story 6 - My wife started a new relationship

I am a 46 year old man, married for 2,5 years and father of 3 kids. We are a patchwork family and are together for 9 years now. Our eldest son is not my biological son, but I raised him as such.

Now my wife decided to end the relationship. She told me she had doubts for a long time already and now she fell in love with a younger man.

I understand that she got feelings for another man... something that happens to many couples after a while. And the daily affairs with three kids strengthens the feeling that something is missing in your life.

But I don't understand why she gives up our family without talking with ME about OUR relationship... Despite the fact that she started already another relationship with someone else, I still want to do everything I can to win her back... I just don't know how to do that...

I already proposed to go to a relationship counsellor, but she doesn't see the point in that. I think she is so much in seventh heaven with her new lover that she is afraid to come back to the reality....

I really don't know what to do now... I don't want to give up on her, am still in love with her, I want to work on my mistakes and our relationship, but does that make sense when she continues (with winkers on)...


Anonymous

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So she is in love with somebody else and doesn't want to go to a relationship therapist with you.

If she doesn't want to choose for you and your family, then it is not an easy case for you.

She is a grown up woman and can make her own decisions, also when they do not make any sense to you, or even if it seems she has winkers on, and even when her decisions or painful for you.

It is good though that you express what you feel and what you would like, but if she is not open to that, then there is nothing more you can do.

She might be open for therapy if the goal would be different.

In stead of your goal "I want you back in our relationship" it could be "how can we deal with this situation in the best way possible for our kids and for our eldest son".

I can imagine that this is difficult for you, because you do not want to give up on her. But maybe this is the best way to leave the possibility open that she might at some point choose for a relationship with you.

To follow up on falling in love with someone new, is very different than having a family and a relationship.

Maybe this is something she needs to experience. And maybe she might find out that there are things about you and your family she is missing. Often some distance is needed to realize that. When you lose something you realize what it was worth.

But it can also be that it is over, she just doesn't want anymore.

In any case it might be a good idea for you to shift your attention from her to you. Go and do things you like, that make you feel good.

And who knows.... when you and her both feel the wish to be together again, that situation is more likely to arise when you feel good.

And if not, at least you are having a good time.


E.

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Story 7 - I don't feel passion for my partner anymore

My relationship is very good. We are each others best friend. It's just.... the passion is lost. Sometimes I miss that immensly. I don't want to live without passion. It's important to me.

But I also don't want to risk my relationship for it. I can't imagine life without my partner. But I also can't imagine life without passion. And I don't know if I can still feel passion for my partner.

I don't know what to do. Anybody recognizes this?


Passion seeker

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Yes, definitely! Exact same situation here. Feel desperate about it. Would love to hear other people's experiences.


W.
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I have been in the same situation, but at some point did not feel well enough in it anymore and we split up. There was afterwards a period of depressed feelings and trying to find my way again. This is some years ago now. Now we are still very close friends, but are both living a passionate life! Very happy that it went like this!


Yantra
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p.s. Before we split up, I tried therapy. For us this was not the solution, we never had much passion from the start. But I can very well imagine that it can give a fantastic boost and can bring passion back in a relationship!


Yantra

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Story 8 - We were thinking about divorce and it got worse

We agreed on one thing; that we disagree with each other, but it's the other ones fault. Every question ended up in balming and fighting. Weather the children were around or not, it just kept on going and we didn't see a way out anymore.

We were thinking about divorce and it got worse. During a 'nice dinner' with friends we almost exploded. They managed to calm us down and let us know about this network of relationship therapists. They had had good experiences with it themselves.

This was a golden tip. We are intensivly in a proces with a relationship therapist for some weeks now and our pattorns became soon clear. The more depended I became and started to claim him. The more my husband closed himself off and tried to escape.

We are not ready yet and it is hard work, but we make steps towards connection, openess and trust.


Anonymous

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Story 9 - In love with a colleague

I fell in love with a colleague. And my colleague is in love with me.

But I also have family. Now I am in doubt. I thought my relationship was fine, but when I look back now I do miss something. Now I don't know what I want... how to continue?


Anonymous

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Falling in love happens to everybody. Me too. I learned for myself that this is a signal that I miss something.

What is it in the person I fell in love with that attracts me? Do I miss that in my partner? Or do I forget to give that to myself? What do I need? Do I like to feel special? Why do I need that from somebody else?

These are the questions I ask myself when I fall in love. Very clarifying. Acting on those feelings is for me a bridge too far.


Anonymous

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Story 10 - Still we mirror and confront each other

The start of our relationship was not quite perfect, more like a flight out of the house then a choice for each other, we were both very young and did not have a good example from our parents.

Looking back I can see now that we made a mess the first years untill I was standing with my back against the wall.

Kind of forced by the situation we started working on ourselves. That has been very good and made us who we are now. We broke free of the structures of our family and walk our own path now.

Still we mirror and confront each other and that is often not easy, but I am convinced that when I can face my biggest fears, we will slowly but steadily grow towards healing.

What supports me is the fact that I know different people who chose to seperate but years afterwards are still facing the same problems in themselves. They are defnitely not better off.


Anonymous

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Well put! With or without a relationship, you will have to break free from the fears and pain you have picked up along the way in your life. You will anyway keep bumping into them, also in a new relationship.

They are often old patterns from our early youth that were taught to us. Survival mechanisms, fighting patterns and behavioral patterns often from you parents. Since they were our first role models.

Healing is only possible once you dare to look and dare to change what you see. Quite a process!


Jolande

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Story 11 - He wants a LAT relationship, I want to live together

My boyfriend and I have a LAT relationship for 10 years now. My goal was to live together with him eventually. He was always postponing.

Now he expressed that he rather keeps it as it is. I love him, but this goes against my ideas about a relationship.

I don't know if I will stay with him or put an end to this relationship?


Anonymous

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Story 12 - Our relationship got dragging

My marriage is kind of working, but not really. It got dragging, no fights, no hate. But the fire is out.

I would like to stay for the kids, but I also have the feeling like, it is my life, you know. I would like to enjoy and to have a partner that I really feel good with, Difficult!

I want to go in relationship therapy, but my partner doesn't want.


Anonymous

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You could consider individual therapy first to see if there is anything you can change in your relationship. Of course it has a better effect when both partners are willing to go for it, but when your partner doesn't want to it is anyway important to see for yourself how you would like to continue and what you can influence and what not.

Good luck.


Jolande

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Story 13 - Ten years unhappy, but I can't leave him

I am already unhappy for ten years, but I don't know if I want to make the decision...

My husband and I.... a fantastic couple, hand in glove... all metaphores used for a happy couple would be applied to us. Although I have to say 'would', because this is by now ten years ago.

I cannot even point my finger on what went wrong.. I didn't do anything wrong, he didn't do anything wrong... still we live together alone. At moments I even hate him! But still I cannot leave him...

I don't know what stops me... the children went their own ways, I can take care of myself, and I would probably still see his family when we would break up....

Do I still like to see him? Probably not! So what's stopping me? ...

I don't find peace anymore, it's always in my head.


Anonymous

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It is a pity that you feel unhappy and cannot put your finger on what went wrong. Apparently there is something you miss in your relationship. Are there unfulfilled needs or maybe also wishes that were never spoken out?

When I read you story it sounds to me like the connection was broken. Maybe you live together but not connected anymore? Everybody does his or her own thing and that's it?

That you don't want to go is maybe because you don't know what the cause is. You are in a kind of comfort zone, you know what you have even though it is something that doesn't really make you happy. Change is frightening and often triggers resistance. It also asks for action and courage.

The question is... what do you want? What is the need you have that is not fulfilled right now? What do you need?


Jolande

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Story 14 - Since divorce more respectful towards each other

After 17 years of marriage, of which ten years going in and out of the hospital because we wanted children but could not get them, it turned out that our ideas about a future without children were very much apart. No children, no longer together, it also created freedom. The freedom to discover what you do when your biggest dream doesn't come true.

Of course, the divorce was sad, but also a lot of recognition towards each other that different could become better. And that turned out to be true. Now, at a distance, but going good and more respectful towards each other then we ever were before.

Good to find a place to write it all down. I wish for everybody a respectful outcome.


Godelieve

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Story 15 - We have decided to split up

My husband and I have decided, after three years of considering (including relationship therapy) to finally split up. We have three young kids and we would like to maintain our relationship is parents for the children, also after the divorce.

We find enough tools with the mediator for after the divorce when we both will go our own way.

Does a therapy exist for after a divorce where both parents have the intention to stay in a good connection as parents for the children? I can not really find it.


Anonymous

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Story 16 - I lost myself

We have been together for 7 years. The last 2 years we always ended up at the same discussion.

I always had the feeling I was trying to make it better then what we had, while he was only busy with himself. Looking back I see I lost myself because I was so much focussed on us and on him.

So after we always came to the same point again and again, I felt hoplessness and at the same time I realized "I have to get out" and "we have to go our own ways, because we don't make each other happy anymore".

For me it is important that you make each other stronger in a relationship and that you feel happy.

Back then I was not ready to divorce, but I found an appartment to live in. We decided to first live on our own. And once that was realized, I felt it wasn't enough and that we should completely seperate.


Anonymous

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Story 17 - My story

After knowing my girlfriend for 30 years and after that 16 years as close friends, suddenly, because of very coincidental happenings, this friendship was ended in one phonecall to me.... (46 years...)

The 30 years before where years that my friend, Jolien*, now ex-partner, I hate that word, was working in a drugstore together with my wife Mart, who died 16 years ago. In that time I have seen her young kids grow up and we played tennis together, also Joliens* husband was there.
It was a wonderful time, to visit each other, playing tennis together for the whole day.
At a certain point my wife got ill, lymphoma, cancer..... very shocking news from the doctor for my wife and me, 50 years old, was never ill before. Working in the drugstore she didn't like to take any medication herself, even when I had a headache and wanted to take aspirin she looked like do you really need to do that....

Mart has had a very heavy process, was three times declared free of cancer after many chemo therapies, later a transplantation with one month in quarantine in a room with overpressure, so that bacteria's do not get a chance in the body of the patient that do not have any resistance anymore. I had to wear mouth protection when I visited her and special clothing and I was barely allowed to touch her and that was how my love was laying there, I could only be there for her.
And everything was for nothing in the end, despite all the efforts from the hospital, everybody was very caring and supportive, they did all they could do.

In the last weeks of Marts life, Jolien*, later my girlfriend, was very supportive in many different ways, things that a man is not so good at....

Months after the death of my wife, Jolien* asked if I would like to come over for dinner, in the mean time she was also alone and eating together would be nice.
I was very happy to do that and later I stayed a little longer and we were watching television together.
After that I went back to my own apartment, we both had our own apartment. Jolien* became a beautician after she retired and she had a practice at home and made women beautiful again and I did noy own things during the day, hobbies, photography in the zoo.

We got a lot of fun out of life together, first not so easy, but later with many nice trips, not too far, by car on short holidays etc....

Suddenly the strangest story of my life happens, Jolien is 77 and I am 73 years old.

Joliens* daughter Lia* and her husband Geno* had had a big fight again, Lia* is ten years older then her husband and her domination is sometimes getting out of hand.... Lia* mother got involved and got very upset. A whatsapp message from me to daughter Lia* saying "please keep your mother out" had a disastrous effect... Lia* wrote back "this message of yours I will discuss with my mother...."
And then something in me snapped, in stead of leaving the mother out of it, she ad a heart attack 6 months earlier, she didnt give a d*mn about my wish to keep her out. So I wrote back "don't do that, I can come to your place to discuss it"... And then it all went wrong because of this, with all due respect, hysterical daughter who was sharing my messages with her brother while they were meant only for her. And then her mother got to know everything. And afterwards it turned out that there was a whole 'family meeting' at the mothers home where I (!) was discussed and sentenced!

A small in between story, on saurday the 8th of april, Jolien* and me went out on a trip to her sister that has a husband that is ill, burn a candle in church, bring light.... The sunday after that, the most beautiful and warm day of april, we went to the beach, were lazy, had a drink. The monday after a whatsapp message "still alive?" as we did every morning. Then had dinner together as always, watching television, received a message as always about the menu, was always very exciting and very well prepared for my taste, I have to eat saltless....

Then the tuesday after, I will never forget that day, time stood still and my life ended. Jolien* called me to announce, Harrie, I end our friendship, I choose for the children, they are over 50 and there was never a problem with me before. We always went to visit them with birthdays and holidays! Together!
I was completely confused and devastated, tried to connect them later but I did not manage. Be aware, before this sudden phonecall I end our friendship, there was nothing strange, nothing at all that I noticed but I was murdered and my head is chopped off.

on top of it, as if it wasn't enough, I got a letter with a non-compliance. Was just taken from the internet, not a real one from the judge. But it was used against me, if I were to come anywhere close, they would call the police. And that after knowing me for so many years! As if I am some kind of criminal, I am nothing of that all, i would harm a fly, ever!

Jolien* who doesn't answer me at all anymore but did read my whatsapp message that my life is no use anymore like this, I also don't any family anymore, my 3 sisters passed away I am completely alone. She did call the doctor who called me to come by because of the possibility that i would hurt myself. Later that night police at the door, 2 even, in full uniform, wanted to talk to me...

Wrote a letter to the daughter about the strange letter she wrote and possible misinterpreting my messages and apologizing, no response at all. Stopped by Joliens* house to try to see if I could get some contact but the doow was not answered and I walked away like an abandoned dog.
Wrote a letter to Joliens son that we are both old people that can still mean a lot to each other in life, support each other like we always have done, you and your sister that live far from the city, and are often traveling, I can support your mother when needed., especially after her heart attack.
Noting..... no response at all...

Saturday again police at the door.... in a building for elderly people, many people will have twisted their necks because of this, again police, full uniform, rubber stopper, weapon, hand coughs with them.... I was a bit disturbed, what did I do wrong this time? I never had more contact with the police then for driving too fast.

Turns out that Jolien had called the police that I, Harrie, was stalking her.... my jaw dropped, three days after the short phonecall that ended my life, the police and Jolien* address my attempts for some contact, one time ringing her doorbell and some whatsapp messages, as stalking....

Later the policemen admitted that it was kind of rough and that it was definitely NOT stalking.

Everything that we were still planning to do together was cancelled, suddenly all the places we used to go I do not dare to go anymore.... april 30th is her birthday....

My doctor told me as a kind of consolation, that people that had a heart attack are often very easily influenced so maybe that's the reason for the sad happenings you had to go through. And yes everybody, I cannot imagine at all that Jolien* my previously so much involved and lovable girlfriend is happy with this situation....

She chose for this... with a big "this is never going to be alright again" still ringing in my ears everyday, this was her saying goodbye.

My advice, never come between parent and child, because it can be used against you just like that. No self pity, just lost completely the meaning of life, the shine of previous joy is gone, the past with many beautiful memories, full of pain, it's over.

Start again for the third time? No, I am completely finished and broken.

My dear wife told me in the most difficult time of her life "always look into the light, then the shadow will be behind you"

So bravely said by that sweet Mart, disappeared behind the horizon already so long ago, I long to be with you there, I am done here. Everything has become meaningless....

Written down in truth.
29/04-2017

P.s. * are fictional names


Harrie

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Story 18 - I don't dare to leave him

30 years together with somebody with an alcohol addiction. 13 years sober. Last months fell back. After weeks of huge fights, discussion he stopped drinking again. We have a 21 year old daughter still living with us.

We don't have a relationship anymore, we don't talk with each other, we don't have mutual interests. but I stay here... I don't dare to leave him because he cannot take care of himself... afraid he will completely go down the drain.

I tell him I want to divorce that I can't stand it anymore.. he ignores me... doesn't show any signs of interest, doesn't want to go anywhere.. who can help me to get out


Nana

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Dear Nana,

If you do not manage to get out of this relationship alone, see if you can find somebody in your surrounding to support you, talk about it with your housedoctor or find a therapist.

It looks like you are not happy in your relationship and it also looks like there is not so much chance that it will get better.

This is your life...


Anonymous

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Story 19 - LAT relation with my ex-husband and in love with another

Hello

I am a mother of two young children (5 and 10).
I am divorced, after a year we kind of came back together again, now we have a LAT relationship.

But not so long ago I fell in love with a fantastic guy with whom I find much more fun and understanding. My ex-husband is manic-depressed and quite selfish.

He is also not so good with the children. The eldest has a development backlog and that often clashes. He calls her names and is physically rough, also with my youngest daughter.

Still they love him naturally it is their father and they want to be with him, I don't want to take that from them because every child deserves a father and mother that are together. That is soooo much in my mind.

My ex-husband can also not be alone with the children because of his disease and he has no authority over the kids and he gives in to keep them quiet, so I am always there one time at my place and in the weekends at his place.

But when I continue with this new guy something will have to change and that scares me so much. Also to not see the children in the weekend, I miss them soooo much then!

My exhusband already gets support from a family coach but he doesn't listen to her, thinks he knows it all better himself.

HELP!!! WHAT SHOULD I DO????????


Angelique

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