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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Parents, Adults and Teens » A Place for Parents?

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Author Topic: A Place for Parents?
Bobolink
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Aside from housing, feeding and clothing you, is there a place for parents in your lives? How involved do you want them to be? How involved do you think they should be?

For parents of teens, it's always a juggling act. When and how should you be supportive? When should you apply the brakes? When should you just close your eyes and hope that your kid is well prepared to do the right thing? This is the scarey part of being a parent.

What do you want from your parents and how can you communicate this to them?

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We can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.

- Albert Einstein

[This message has been edited by Bobolink (edited 02-04-2002).]

[This message has been edited by Bobolink (edited 02-06-2002).]


Posts: 3442 | From: Stirling, Ontario, Canada | Registered: Sep 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Celtic Daisy
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I love my parents, they are a huge part of my lives and i can't, and don't want to imagine them not being in my life.

I'm really close to my mom especially. I'm her only daughter and me at 16 and her at 47, we're closer then ever. I'll often wear her clothes, we go see and rent movies together, i tell my mom everything, like who's my current crush, what's going on in my friends life, problems i'm having. She's like my best friend, but different,because she's my mom. We love to read eachothers books, and she helps me dye my hair, and buy's me make up and let's me experiment with different looks. My mom trusts me so i have a lot of freedom too.
If my mom wasn't a big part of my life i don't know how i'd survive.

I'm not as close to my dad, and i think part of that is, because he's a guy. But i love him so much. He's coached my soccer teams, he's been to almost every single sports game i've ever had, and every dance recital and drama performance(add all that up from the age of 5). He's always there with a video camera ready to capture it all. My dad's great.

Life without my parents being there for me would be horrible. I see other people at school who talk about how much they hate their parents and i'm so glad that's not me.

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'My advice is to get them off right after your shoes and before your trousers...that's the sock gap. Miss it and suddenly you're a naked man in socks. No self-respecting woman will let a naked man in socks do the squelchy with her'-Jeff Murdock
(Coupling, BBCC)

~Erin~


Posts: 1747 | From: Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada | Registered: Mar 2001  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
tasha
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My parents are wonderful, I love how they are a part of my life but they don't ever nose themselves into things. I feel comfortable around them both to talk to them about anything from dating issues to school issues to ethical concerns...I feel like i can tell them whatever i choose, no matter what the topic, and they will respect (notice i didn't say AGREE with!) my views and support me in whatever way i choose to handle the situations. I love how i can bring up things that i'm sure they wouldn't normally be thinking about, like gay rights, college problems, bf problems, etc, and they will lend an ear to listen, a non-judgemental shoulder to cry on, and gentle advice and support.

They never pry into things, and if i don't want to talk about something, they won't pressure me about it. I think they've done a great job of having a laid-back parenting style. I know they will always be there for me if i need them (they have proved this to me several times), and i know i can come to them with my problems, or just to talk, but they have also stayed out of my life enough to allow me the chance to make my own mistakes and learn how to handle difficult situations on my own (moving away for college is a good time for that!).

So, I guess I'd say the best thing for a parent to do is let their child know, somehow, that they are there for them but also allow the child room to grow, learn, and experience life and all its mistakes and joys for themselves. In turn, maybe it'd be nice for teens to remember that parents have a tough role to play, and generally only want what's best for their children.


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If you're not living on the edge, you're taking up too much space!

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Posts: 68 | From: Brooklyn, NY (Ev,IL right now tho) | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
mazz
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I think I'm fairly happy with the amount of involvement my parents have in my life. My parents were always fairly laid back, and by the time i was about 12 i had lots of freedoms.

My parents let me go out basically wherever i want, within reason of course, if i tell them where I'm going and when I'll be home. I guess they trust me alot to be responsible and do what i say i'm doing, which i do.

They always adivised me of things that they think i should do, so i know how they feel about things, but they never forced anything on me. I guess there were a few things that i wasnt allowed to do when i was younger, like get various peircings and things like that, but i always knew that once i got a little older, or if i REALLY explained something to them calmly and repsonsibly, they wouldnt mind me doing things that make me happy.

I think that although my parents were stricter when i was younger about little things, they have realised since my early teens (im now 17) that i am responsible enoug hto make my own decisions, and im sure they would interviene if something rerally serious was to happen. But they always tell me what they think about things, even if i dont take thier advice, and i'm happy with that.


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PoetgirlNY
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I would really rather that my parents have no involvement in my life other than housing, feeding, and clothing me. I hate them. I don't get along with them. If there were any legal way to do it, I would have moved out years ago. They don't provide me with anything valuable. All they give me is material stuff that I don't care much about anyway. I have no emotional relationship with them whatsoever. They're just this annoying burden that I have to deal with. All my friends are older than me, and it's so annoying to have to leave get-togethers at 10:30 when they're just getting started. There was a week recently when I was fighting with my parents so badly that I just stopped listening to them altogether. That was the best week ever. I got to take care of myself, be responsible, and deal with my own life. Unfortunately that ended because they were threatening really really really bad things. Ah well, it sucks now, but I'll be 18 in six months!

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"I'll be a Venus on a chocolate clamshell rising on a sea of marshmallow foam."
-Hedwig


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Bobolink
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I am truly sorry that you and your parents can't seem to communicate, Poetgirl. From your viewpoint, what should be the appropriate role for parents of teens? If you could redesign your parents, what changes would you make?

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We can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.

- Albert Einstein


Posts: 3442 | From: Stirling, Ontario, Canada | Registered: Sep 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
PoetgirlNY
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I'm so far removed from a normal relationship that it's hard to even imagine parents being good. I stayed with my aunts for the summer, and I think they were close to perfect. They were basically acting as parents, but it was also different because they only had to deal with me at the age of 17. They let me have my freedom, hang out with who I wanted to hang out with, etc., and they also really cared about me. Like if I was having a hard day, and I came home, we could all talk about it. We had fun together. We cooked dinner together, we recorded an answering machine message together, they were just a great time. I think that's probably how parents should be. But I can't imagine how they could have dealt with me at 12 . . . or how anyone could deal with me at 12.

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"I'll be a Venus on a chocolate clamshell rising on a sea of marshmallow foam."
-Hedwig


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TenohSetsuna
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My dad and I discuss politics, religion, sports, theater, and anime. My mother and I talk a little as I can manage, usually along the lines of "hey, where's the milk?" Good with me. She's the one who takes me shopping for clothes, though, which always ends in a fight about how I can't act "normal" and wear girly clothes, chat it up with the girls in my school, and act slightly more straight. I'm sure my mother actually cares, but she's needs some book telling her how to deal with a daughter who hates some rather ordinary words and doesn't believe in gender or a god, living in Conservative-ville, USA. I've gone off into my own rant about my mother and I. Makes me wish she was out of town more often.

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I don't want eternity. But Arashii is mine.

"I never said I was a boy." - Tenoh Haruka, episode 92, Bishoujo Senshi Sailormoon


Posts: 102 | From: SoCal | Registered: Dec 2001  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Gumdrop Girl
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i live about 300 miles away from my parents. we never really were the "talking" type of family. my father is a very terse man, and my mother is a harsh critic for whom nothing ever really seems good enough. and i hate using the telephone. this all makes for a lousy combination. my parents call me periodically to make sure i'm still alive. i call only if i really need something. they make sure i have enough money to cover my rent.

don't get me wrong, i don't have anything against my parents. i'm quite fond of them. but i'm not close to them, or anyone, really. i wish i were. but a vast generation gap (my parents are 60ish and I'm 21) and a slew of cultural differences (they're immigrants, and I'm too American for their taste sometimes) make it really difficult for us to understand each other.
add to that mounting pressure to succeed. this is driving the wedge between us most at the moment. my father is ailing so they want to finish school as soon as possible. I'm trying, I really am. If I could be done already, I would be. But I screw up more than my fair share, so it's going to take some time and more work before I'm done. That's assuming I succeed at all. Admitting to my folks that I'm not doing as well in school as they'd hope is something I can't do. So I don't say anything instead. I just keep working to cover up my last SNAFU.

What's always worried me is that I know they won't be around forever. But lately, I've watched them getting older. My father has aged 15 years in the last 4. it scares me that I'll probably lose them before i have the chance to really get close to them.

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straddle the fine line between profundity and profanity...


Posts: 12677 | From: Los Angeles, CA ... somewhere off the 10 | Registered: Jul 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Aria51
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All in all, my folks are pretty great. I get along famously with my mother, and my father and I have our moments.

My mom took me back into her home so I wouldn't have to be more financial pressure than normal when I had my son. She drove me to almost all of my prenatal appointments, and she takes me to school in the morning because she knows how much I hate to drive. In return, I obey her rules (they really do make a LOT of sense to me now) and I've transferred half of my savings to a household account to help with grocery, heating, water, insurance bills and the like. We both keep track of how much money we have in that account, and only spend the amout that we've put in. So say I put in $X. Out of that comes groceries 2 or 3 times a week, bills that affect me directly (heat, water, telephone, etc). Out of what's left, I'll buy my son things he needs, or sometimes something (usually clothing or the expensive shampoo I like) for myself. But if there's nothing left out of that $X, I don't buy anything else until I've deposited more money. She does the same. We've been doing this for almost a year, and it's worked extremely well so far.
She and I talk a lot. We go on shopping and roadtrips together. If I'm spending the night anywhere, I call her to let her know I'm OK. I went on vacation with my brother and my son this summer, and I called in every single night. If I'm out and I'm going to be late coming home, I call and let her know. This was one of the house rules when I was in high school, and I just haven't gotten out of the habit yet. I think it's really a courtesy thing too -- Even though I'm 21, I know she still worries about me when I'm not home. I'm pretty sure, actually, that she worries MORE now that I'm old enough to legally drink.

My dad's a different story. We've never been close -- we're just two entirely different people. He's a Republican, I'm a Democrat. He thinks racist and "fat" jokes are funny, I take offense to them. He's extremely interested in money and material posessions, I think being educated and having a strong personal character are more important. We do find things to talk about, but they're just unimportant little things to fill the silence when he's here. He criticizes me, and I criticize right back. We're both pretty talented at knowing exactly how to hurt the other's feelings and we do it often. We don't fight nearly as much as we used to, and the words "I hate you." haven't passed between us in almost 6 months. I really think things are getting better.


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Beppie
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I've always gotten on well with my parents- my father and I have a lot in common, and my mother is a great person- I know she will always be there if I need someone to talk to, although I don't usually take advantage of that, being a fairly private person.

My parents always know pretty much what is going on in my life- I'm often very surprized when people I know tell me that their parents don't know about this or that aspect of their lives, simply because it is quite natural for me to tell my parents what is happenning with me. Although, come to think of it, I haven't done that quite as much lately.

However, my parents have always been much more to me than simply material providers.


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DarkChild717
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My mom and I get along great. She knows a lot about me. In fact, almost everything. She is one of my best friends. She understands that I am more responsible than most of my peers, and treats me as such. In turn, I respect her. We piss each other off, but it's healthy to have disagreements.

My father and I are getting better. I am still his blue eyed, blond whispy haired little girl in my little frilly white dress, posing for the camera. And the fact of the matter is, I am not that child anymore. He's getting a lot better, though. My brothers bought me a cell phone for my birthday, and there have been little declarations of my independence. Things have gotten a lot better since I wrote him a letter, telling him exactly how I felt about him. Things are really good.

My mother's liberal morals and my father's 1950's-era morals have shaped me into who I am. And I am happy with me. It's only a recent development, but I am.


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Lilfran14
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I love my mom very much. She divorced my dad when i was in 3rd grade, im now in 11th grade. I could most definetly live without my dad (long story), but never without my mom. she means everything to me and more i love her soo much. And my friends love her to. As much as she does for me i do for her also, jsut because shes the mother doesnt mean i cant help her out or bye her clothes instead of her bying her own. Im just glad i have the mom that i do!

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~*Katie Frances*~
"No i dont want to meet ur friends,
and i dont want to start over again
i just want my life to be the same just like it
use to be..somedays i hate everything,everyone
and everything, please dont tell me everything is
wonderful now" ~Everclear


Posts: 183 | From: Buffalo, NY :) | Registered: Feb 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Laura
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My parents and I are cordial. Usually. We've never said "I hate you," but it's been longer than I can remember since we've said "I love you."

When I was still at home, things were pretty okay. We'd do things as a family - dinners at restaurants, weekend shopping trips, summer vacations. I went through one or two phases when I decided that it wasn't cool for a teenage girl to do stuff with her family, but other than that, it was...well...pretty okay. We all got along, but I never felt really close to them.

When I left for college, things were pretty much the same. I always called home once a week, just to keep them up to date on how things are going. I figured that since *they* called *their* parents once a week, that was How Things Were Done. And so we stayed cordial, but not close.

When my brother (3 years my junior) left for college, it was another story. All of a sudden, I think, the Empty Nest feeling set in, and they decided that they couldn't accept that fact that he and I were growing up. And they took it out on me. The threatened to disown me three times that year - once was for not competing in math contests anymore, once was for declining a nomination for some honor society, and I forget what the third one was. I couldn't understand why they cared about these things, but since I still depended on them for tuition money and a place to stay over breaks, their threats were very real.

That was four years ago. We patched things up after not too long, and things were back to pretty okay for a while. But my brother's graduating from college this spring, and already I can feel the Empty Nest feeling coming back to them. Except that now, I earn my own salary and have my own apartment. All I depend on them for is emotional support, and if they decide to withhold that, it'll hurt them as much as it hurts me.

Sorry this is so long - but has anybody else gone through anything like this? Where your parents have trouble dealing with the fact that they don't make the rules for you anymore?


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PeaceAngel
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I love both of my parents VERY much. -I am especially close to my mom. She is a true person to admire. She supports all four of us kids in whatever areas we need her for leaning on. Also, her teaching and encouragement, as Miz Scarlet already knows, helped me make one of the most important decisions in my life.

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~It takes all kinds of people to make our world interesting and it takes acceptance to make our world peacful.~


Posts: 46 | From: San Diego, CA | Registered: Mar 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Bobolink
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<bump>
Posts: 3442 | From: Stirling, Ontario, Canada | Registered: Sep 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
christinejones
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i love my mother more than anything in the world --- we had such a great childhood (all of us) i sometimes wonder with such a great start in life how two of us (me and my elder sister managed to eff up so badly!!)....

i love my dad too but it's not the same - i get on well with him and he with me because i amuse him and he likes the fact that i dress well (don't start on this topic!!) and all his cronies will say what a striking daughter/whatever which pleases his ego... so it's conditional somewhere i feel with my dad i mean i know if i turned up to go out for a meal with him but looked a mess he'd be annoyed and in a bad mood but having said that there are lots of times i really appreciate that slightly removed relationship ---- but with my mom it has always been totally unconditional and right there - full on no matter what.

i was such a good child aswell - i never did anything bad until i turned eighteen, even when i first left high school i went to volunteer with the missionaries of charity at an orphanage because i was thinking to become a nun. but then i met my boyfriend, moved out and i went a bit crazy - my boyfriend was probably a bad influence but i wanted it so i can't complain! i turned into a super-bitch though!

but while at home we never had conflict over rules or anything (either this was because mom let me do whatever i wanted or because i naturally did whatever she wanted - perhaps a bit of both i was always so eager to make sure she was happy and perhaps vice versa??).

if i ever could give my own children such a childhood as i received i would be amazed and feel i had done a fantastic job.

having said all that - at the moment, the only thing i want to do is create some independence REALLY badly from my mom. and i don't know why (i mean it's not as though i live with her or anything but yet i still feel tied to the apron-strings on all sorts of levels and i want to get my life to be my own) it's a bit like being pulled from pillar to post and i feel very split about the whole thing. plus no-one in my family really approves of my current boyfriend which is annoying.

i guess it is an inevitable part of life and not everything in life is straightforward. why i feel it so strongly - i don't know because although i want to break away i still believe if that i totally eff up i should be allowed to fall back on my parents! slightly unfair somewhere i can see.

ah well - so much for trying to get on with my work! i should get a medal for procrastination techniques.

i am however, unfortunately, possessed of a step-monster known to most as Elizabeth but to me and my sister much more aptly as Lizard-Breath... and boy is she a monster. parents are good (normally) but most of my friends and I have competitions to see who has the worst step and which one has done the most evil thing and man, you can't believe it... apparently previously normal women/men turning into fiends from hell on the occasion of their second marriage - what is with that?

hey miz scarlet (if you read this post) i checked out your other websites as more work-avoidence hahahaha - you know what? i thought you would be sooo much older cos you always talk about gray hairs and wrinkles (my *** !!!) i think i kinda knew that you were in your thirties but i'd just bumped it up in my head to mid-forties or more with frizzy salt and pepper hair a bit out of control.......... quite a revelation!


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playbunny
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my parents are involved in my life alot and we got on great but on the odd occasion we have arguements i dont tell them everything that goes on in my life only the things that they need to know like if im getting bullied or sexually harrassed at school/college.

peace out holla


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summergoddess
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"My parents let me go out basically wherever i want, within reason of course, if i tell them where I'm going and when I'll be home. I guess they trust me alot to be responsible and do what i say i'm doing, which i do. "

^^Same here with my own parents.

I had a very close relationship with both of my parents growing up. There was some tension in my early teens.

Although when I started dating Isaiah in '01, things got better with my parents with time of course. They've trusted me enough to let me see him when i want to, and when i want to come home and etc.

My relationship with my mother has grown a lil more closer since I got engaged to Isaiah last year. We've been spending more time together with wedding stuff and etc. So i'm lovin that.

Isaiah and I will be living together in 3 months, and i have a huge feeling that once i'm out of the house, there will be more bonding i'm sure with both of my parents (and more communication as well).

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~Jules


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rccolagirl
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Reading this thread makes me depressed, because I wish I had the sort of relationship with my parents that many of you seem to have. I think an open, honest, respectful relationship would be the best thing in my life right now.

My parents and I...well, we don't get along famously, I'll say that. I'm sort of the "problem-child" in my house - you know, I have two little angel-sisters and whatnot. So a lot of what goes wrong around our house gets blamed on me (whether or not I have anything to do with it). Added to that, there's the famous "oldest" syndrome where - "You're older, you are responsible for their actions" etc.

My parents are immigrants, and were raised in a much more conservative area. They're very religious people, and very in tune with their culture. I, on the other hand, don't care so much for religion or the culture of my parents. I don't like them trying to impose their religion on me, or impose a culture on me that I don't identify with - I'm born and bred American.

My parents just don't seem to understand American concepts, really. I know all teenagers rebel and whatnot, but it seems like every day we fight to the point of tears. None of us can understand each other. I wish I could tell my mom about my relationships with boys, problems with friends or at school, etc, but she just wouldn't be open to listening. She and my dad would just explode if I tried to tell them some things I do. So I have to essentially live in secrecy, when most of the things I do...well, I don't think they're that bad. But it's hard not to be able to talk to your parents about where you're going or who you're seeing because they don't trust you. My parents would find it much more normal if I stayed in every weekend and did homework. I go out maybe, once every two weeks, always saying I'm with girl friends, always home early, and they think I'm a party animal headed for disaster.

So yeah. I do wish I could have that kind of relationship. But I just don't see it happening.


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Bobolink
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How familiar are you with your parents' background and culture? Sometimes understanding where they are coming from helps bridge the gap.

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I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who has endowed us with sense, reason, and intellect has intended us to forgo their use.

- Galileo


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Bobolink
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<bump>

--------------------
I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who has endowed us with sense, reason, and intellect has intended us to forgo their use.

- Galileo

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