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Long distance marriage?

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mochamamasita

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Right now my boyfriend and I are in a long distance relationship and he lives an hour away from me. We''ve been planning on getting engaged by March 2010, and married the following year. I''m worried because he''s applied to numerous grad schools and some of the schools are near me, but others are near him. If he ends up at a grad school near him, then that means that if we got married based on our timeline, then we''d have a long distance marriage for a while because he''d be at school an hour away. So, I''m wondering if any of you guys had to be in a long distance marriage for a while or know anybody who was in a long distance marriage. If so, then please tell me what it was like.


Also, maybe I was thinking that I should just extend the timeline? What do you think?
 

Italiahaircolor

Ideal_Rock
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Dec 16, 2007
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Why couldn''t you move to be closer to him?
 

mochamamasita

Shiny_Rock
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Italiahaircolor: I can''t move closer because I''ve got a really good stable job with great pay, so I think it makes more sense for me to stay where I am. Plus he doesn''t h
 

mochamamasita

Shiny_Rock
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Jan 14, 2009
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You can strike out that second sentence. (I tried to delete it, but it didn''t delete it completely) hehe
 

Guilty Pleasure

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I would not recommend starting a marriage while living an hour apart.

1. He can pick a school near you if it is his intention to marry you.

2. You can start looking for a job near him with the understanding that you would not move until you wree engaged.

3. You could wait to be married until you are able to live in the same city.



If you both put your career/schooling before the marriage, then when could it possibly work out? What if the best job he is offered after school isn''t where you live? Would you continue to be married in different cities indefinitely? People who plan to be married or are married must put the health of their marriage at the top of the priority list and make these decisions as a team, not two individuals.

My fiance is the navy, and we planned our engagement and marriage around a time when he would not be on a ship for three years. We have been long distance dating since June 2002, but did not move towards marriage until I was out of grad school and he was done with a three year deployment in Japan. I''m sure others can make it work, but I cannot imagine starting a marriage without actually living together!



Maybe one of you could commute or you could live somewhere inbetween? An hour is not really that far.
 

swingirl

Ideal_Rock
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Apr 6, 2006
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5,654
Long distance relationship being one hour away?? How can that be? Where I live a one hour commute to work or school is very common. I am just amazed that you aren''t willing to commute to a great job so you bf can become your husband and continue his education.
 

CNOS128

Ideal_Rock
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Jan 28, 2008
Messages
2,700
When my fiance and I were dating, we lived in different boroughs of NYC and it took me about an hour to get to him (had to switch trains; it was a mess)! Now that we live together, I have an hour commute by subway to get to law school, and it''s not so bad. And not uncommon around here, either. Maybe one of you could commute, or you could both move halfway between your job and his school?
 

Smurfysmiles

Ideal_Rock
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An hour commute is not unusual where I live either. If you can''t give up a job or at least commute then I personally think you should wait. Ditto to marriage meaning you are a team and the marriage comes first before anything else.
 

meresal

Ideal_Rock
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My manager lives and works in Houston, and her husband lives and works in Naples, FL... they see each other every third weekend, at the most. THAT is a long distance marriage. Really, 1 hour?? My commute to work is an hour each way. To be honest, I'm not sure why you're worrying about this? Can't you find an apartment, for a few years, in the middle?

If he gets into school an hour away, and I'm assuming he'll start graduate school this August(??)... then I would wait until he's done with school to get married anyway. It would only be another 5 or 6 months if he graduated in 2 years.

ETA: Just read your last little comment, and I 100% agree that you should move the timeline. Wait for him to get out of grad school and find a job. I think it would be easier on the marriage if you have a stable houshold income to start with.
 

decodelighted

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For just about a year now my husband has been commuting to a job 90 miles away EVERY DAY ... which takes him nearly four hours. To try to compensate a bit I do ALL the housework, cook all the meals etc. Its what we need to do right now in our particular house/job/life situation. A HUGE sacrifice on his part but he does it for *us*.

I would think (hope?) that you all could find a place in the middle or work out an arrangement as we have (above)???
 

FrekeChild

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Joined
Dec 14, 2007
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19,456
FI is contemplating getting a job. FI can''t get a job here in NM. The best place FI can find a job? The East Coast. That''s a couple thousand miles away, and several hours on a plane.

I have a friend who lives in Phoenix and commutes here to Albuquerque. Yes. Over state lines of two of the largest states in the US. He jumps on a plane and flies over here to work. Now granted he lives here 4 days of the week and lives there 3 days, but the principle is the same. I think if he can make that work, an hour is no big deal. I''d move in the middle so he has a half an hour and you have half an hour.
 

dec2410

Shiny_Rock
Joined
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499
to echo what a lot of the other ladies have mentioned here, an hour commute is fairly common in my area. i already live about 30 minutes away from my bf, on a good day...an hour + on a traffic-y day. if he gets admitted to a school near him, i''d say, compromise and find a place that meets in the middle, making both of your commutes a half hour. i think that''s more than reasonable. just my $.02.
 

musey

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Date: 3/6/2009 12:52:17 PM
Author: swingirl
Long distance relationship being one hour away?? How can that be? Where I live a one hour commute to work or school is very common. I am just amazed that you aren't willing to commute to a great job so you bf can become your husband and continue his education.
That was my thought, as well. If the school and the job are only an hour from each other, why wouldn't you just split the difference and each have a 1/2 hour commute?

I can't say it makes much sense to live separately when your commitments (work/school) are that close to one another. What's the point?



Futhermore, I personally (for myself, farbeit for me to judge anyone else's decision) wouldn't see the point in getting married unless we were going to live as a couple - together.


That said, to answer your original question: yes, I've known two couples who had a long distance marriage. One couple was split between LA and NY, and the other was split between Chicago-area and Washington DC. One of those marriages did not last, and the other ended up going through many years of couples' counseling.

Who is to say whether it was because of the distance, but I'm sure it didn't help.
 

CNOS128

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Date: 3/6/2009 1:51:14 PM
Author: musey

Futhermore, I personally (for myself, farbeit for me to judge anyone else''s decision) wouldn''t see the point in getting married unless we were going to live as a couple - together.



That said, to answer your original question: yes, I''ve known two couples who had a long distance marriage. One couple was split between LA and NY, and the other was split between Chicago-area and Washington DC. One of those marriages did not last, and the other ended up going through many years of couples'' counseling.


Who is to say whether it was because of the distance, but I''m sure it didn''t help.

I kinda agree, but I think in this case it''s seen as a temporary condition. I wouldn''t want to marry someone and live apart right away. But I know couples who lived together when they got married and then got (usually academic) jobs in different cities and had to live separately. I don''t think their marriages would have been as strong had they not lived together for years before that happened. And it doesn''t work for everyone.

I personally am inconsolable when my fiance goes out of town for 4 days, so I couldn''t do it (yet. ask me in 20 years!).
 

musey

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Date: 3/6/2009 2:03:44 PM
Author: TheBigT
Date: 3/6/2009 1:51:14 PM
Author: musey
Futhermore, I personally (for myself, farbeit for me to judge anyone else's decision) wouldn't see the point in getting married unless we were going to live as a couple - together.

That said, to answer your original question: yes, I've known two couples who had a long distance marriage. One couple was split between LA and NY, and the other was split between Chicago-area and Washington DC. One of those marriages did not last, and the other ended up going through many years of couples' counseling.

Who is to say whether it was because of the distance, but I'm sure it didn't help.
I kinda agree, but I think in this case it's seen as a temporary condition. I wouldn't want to marry someone and live apart right away. But I know couples who lived together when they got married and then got (usually academic) jobs in different cities and had to live separately. I don't think their marriages would have been as strong had they not lived together for years before that happened. And it doesn't work for everyone.

I personally am inconsolable when my fiance goes out of town for 4 days, so I couldn't do it (yet. ask me in 20 years!).
Of course. I doubt that many married couples see living long-distance as anything but a 'temporary condition.' Both couples I was referencing saw it that way.

One was separated for about a year (the ones that got divorced, for whatever that's worth) and the other was separated for close to three years. The latter couple came very close to divorcing once they tried to re-mesh their living situation after those three years, and went into counseling instead (and continued to live separately - though in the same town, this time). It's been about five years (I think) and from what I can tell they're doing better.


Crap, I think I just broke my "'""'' key. Hmph.


ETA: My stance on this topic is likely heavily colored by the fact that my career requires LOTS of travel, often for months at a time (though I haven't gotten to that stage yet). All the advice I hear is that if you're going to make a serious go at a marriage, you have to put it first. If you have to travel, you have to commit to either finding a way to take the other person with you OR making your way back 'home' whenever possible, for as long as possible. There has to be a home base that's both of yours. No his-house-my-house. OUR house.
 

CNOS128

Ideal_Rock
Joined
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Date: 3/6/2009 2:13:01 PM
Author: musey
Date: 3/6/2009 2:03:44 PM

Author: TheBigT

Date: 3/6/2009 1:51:14 PM

Author: musey

Futhermore, I personally (for myself, farbeit for me to judge anyone else''s decision) wouldn''t see the point in getting married unless we were going to live as a couple - together.


That said, to answer your original question: yes, I''ve known two couples who had a long distance marriage. One couple was split between LA and NY, and the other was split between Chicago-area and Washington DC. One of those marriages did not last, and the other ended up going through many years of couples'' counseling.


Who is to say whether it was because of the distance, but I''m sure it didn''t help.
I kinda agree, but I think in this case it''s seen as a temporary condition. I wouldn''t want to marry someone and live apart right away. But I know couples who lived together when they got married and then got (usually academic) jobs in different cities and had to live separately. I don''t think their marriages would have been as strong had they not lived together for years before that happened. And it doesn''t work for everyone.


I personally am inconsolable when my fiance goes out of town for 4 days, so I couldn''t do it (yet. ask me in 20 years!).
Of course. I doubt that many married couples see living long-distance as anything but a ''temporary condition.'' Both couples I was referencing saw it that way.


One was separated for about a year (the ones that got divorced, for whatever that''s worth) and the other was separated for close to three years. The latter couple came very close to divorcing once they tried to re-mesh their living situation after those three years, and went into counseling instead (and continued to live separately - though in the same town, this time). It''s been about five years (I think) and from what I can tell they''re doing better.



Crap, I think I just broke my '''''''''''' key. Hmph.
Yeah, you''re right - I guess by default this sort of separation would be thought of as temporary, not permanent - because that''s just a separation, not a marriage.
Sometimes I''m slow on the uptake.

I also know that at least one of the long-distance couples I knew that ''worked out'' had what people refer to as an "open relationship." Wonder if that helped.

Anyway, sorry to stray off-topic, mochamama. Good luck to you & your BF!
 

tlh

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 31, 2008
Messages
4,511
Date: 3/6/2009 1:51:14 PM
Author: musey

Date: 3/6/2009 12:52:17 PM
Author: swingirl
Long distance relationship being one hour away?? How can that be? Where I live a one hour commute to work or school is very common. I am just amazed that you aren''t willing to commute to a great job so you bf can become your husband and continue his education.
That was my thought, as well. If the school and the job are only an hour from each other, why wouldn''t you just split the difference and each have a 1/2 hour commute?

I can''t say it makes much sense to live separately when your commitments (work/school) are that close to one another. What''s the point?

DITTO.

An hour? I used to commute to work and the drive was 90 minutes in the morning and closer to 2 hours coming home.... I think you two should be able to negotiate being closer to each other. Just my .02
 

Italiahaircolor

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 16, 2007
Messages
5,184
As the old married lady here, I want to strongly advise you against intentionally having a long distance marriage. What works for dating doesn''t always carry over to marriage well.

The first year...heck, marriage in general is hard enough with add undo stress to it! For the sake of an extended commute youre willing to pay double rent, utilities and so on?

I suggest either meeting each other half way or holding off until you''re better prepared for cohabitating.

Just my two for what it''s worth
 

Elmorton

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jul 5, 2007
Messages
3,998
DH and I were engaged while living 40 mins apart - we spent his days off (midweek) and my weekends together - so about 4 days out of every week were spent together. I was a grad student with not a whole lot of extra time, and it worked really well for us at that point in our lives.

When I was done with school, we moved in together a month before we were married. It was different and took some adjusting. We lived together for 3 months before DH got a new job and I had to stay behind. Then we lived 3 hours apart for another 3 months.

We did what we had to do...but it was extremely stressful and emotionally difficult.

I strongly agree with the other posters - live halfway, meet in the middle.
 

somegirl932

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Mar 2, 2009
Messages
311
Even though we''re not engaged, we''ve talked about when we''d like to get married... we went the route of pushing back the timeline because I didn''t want any chance of not being together after we were married... I''m graduating in December and probably moving across the country, but he won''t finish grad school until probably a year later.

I didn''t want any chance of still being separated by the time we got married, so we''re looking at a January 2012 wedding, which would give us an extra year if his grad school takes longer or job hunting takes awhile.

That said, an hour doesn''t sound too bad. The kind of jobs my boyfriend is looking for would probably be around 40 minutes from where I''m looking at jobs, so we''d probably just split the commute or something. (Or he''d do most of the driving, because he likes it and I''d rather not.
)

His parents actually did a long distance marriage for awhile, but not at the beginning. When he was in 3rd grade I think (older and younger brothers as well) his dad got transferred to Chicago (they lived in New Jersey) and they didn''t want to pull the kids out of school right then. It also took awhile to sell their old house and find a new one, and the family wasn''t actually reunited for 3+ years. Their dad flew back most weekends, but it definitely took a strain on the family. He''s always said that he was never as close to his dad after that. His parents are still together though. I know, different situation, but there''s my input.
 

LtlFirecracker

Ideal_Rock
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Feb 29, 2008
Messages
4,837
I would kill to be moving to a place where my BF could get a job an hour a way. That is doable, vs being a couple hundred miles away, or a few states, which are both of our options right now.

I still don''t know what we are going to do about marriage. I know several couples who started out married in a LDR, and although it was rough, they have made it work. But the situation was only temporary, meaning a few years. I think if you are going to get married, you need to have a timeline of when you are going to live together, especially if a family is down the line. All the couples I have known who have been in this situation have delayed having children until they could be together.
 

Smurfysmiles

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Messages
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Mocha, I hope you come back and talk to us some more! I know getting a lot of feedback on your first post on this forum can be a little overwhelming but we really are only giving you our opinions :)

Somegirl- my parents did that as well, they spent a year apart so my older sister could finish high school in one place and my dad could start his new job in another (mn and tx). I''m sure it was rough what with my mom getting stuck with a newborn (i.e. little ole me lol) but they definitely made it work :) My parents are weirdos though, they got engaged before they even started dating! My dad proposed in a letter to my mom from vietnam and my mom had had a crush on him through all of high school but he was older and too cool for a marching band "geek" like my mom lol. sorry to get OT, I just had 6 cadbury mini eggs and sometimes ramble...yeah there i go again....hah
 

caribqueen

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Dec 22, 2008
Messages
507
First off, I think you should always try to live in the same city while dating before you even think about getting married, so that you make sure that it''s going to work. But I also feel like you might be getting ahead of yourself. Why not wait until your BF gets into Grad school, and then make a decision from there. Or better yet wait until he graduates because it could become an issue again if he''s willing to go wherever his job takes him and that means further away.

I do have a friend who did the long-distance marriage thing (she in TX, he in CA), but the thing is they had lived together after college before they got married and for their first couple years of marriage. It was her job that took her away for about a year. They are now living together again in the same city and everything seems to be fine. I think if while you''re married life happens and it''s a last-resort to have a long-distance marriage temporarily then so be it, but to start off that way, not good.

If it turns out that you guys are an hour away and you''re not willing to change jobs then I agree with other posters to meet some where in the middle.

It''s really about sacrifice on both sides though. A wise person once told me, you go where whoever makes the most money. That may not always be the same person in the relationship.
 

Haven

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Feb 15, 2007
Messages
13,166
I think you should do what is best for the two of you.

My sister will be marrying and living in a different state than her husband for a few years. She is starting rabbinical school this summer, so she'll be in Israel for one year. Then she'll be in either LA, New York, or Cincinnati for five years after the year in Israel. Her boyfriend is a teacher here in Illinois, and he plans to stay here and earn tenure at his school, because he likes his school, and high school teaching jobs are extremely difficult to come by around here.

They have been dating for seven years already, so they will have been together for 13 years by the time she is finished with rabbinical school. While it may not be an ideal situation, they are doing what is right for them, and nobody else knows their relationship well enough to say that they should or shouldn't marry while she's in grad school. (People think they do, though. I find it interesting when people who are married to someone they've only known for three years try to tell my sister not to marry her boyfriend of over seven years. So, mocha, everyone will have opinions and some will be negative. It doesn't mean they mean anything.)

I had a college professor in Illinois whose husband was a prof at UPenn. They had a long-distance marriage, and it wasn't a short-term situation. But she was a strange bird, and that's what worked for them.

As for the one hour between the two of you, that's my commute home from work. That hardly seems like an obstacle to have to overcome.

Good luck!
 

Deelight

Ideal_Rock
Joined
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Messages
5,543
Date: 3/6/2009 1:51:14 PM
Author: musey
Date: 3/6/2009 12:52:17 PM

Author: swingirl

Long distance relationship being one hour away?? How can that be? Where I live a one hour commute to work or school is very common. I am just amazed that you aren''t willing to commute to a great job so you bf can become your husband and continue his education.
That was my thought, as well. If the school and the job are only an hour from each other, why wouldn''t you just split the difference and each have a 1/2 hour commute?


I can''t say it makes much sense to live separately when your commitments (work/school) are that close to one another. What''s the point?





Futhermore, I personally (for myself, farbeit for me to judge anyone else''s decision) wouldn''t see the point in getting married unless we were going to live as a couple - together.



That said, to answer your original question: yes, I''ve known two couples who had a long distance marriage. One couple was split between LA and NY, and the other was split between Chicago-area and Washington DC. One of those marriages did not last, and the other ended up going through many years of couples'' counseling.


Who is to say whether it was because of the distance, but I''m sure it didn''t help.
Ditto, just each move 1/2 hour closer to each other and problem solvered - an hour drive is nothing really heck you can drive for 8hrs or longer here and still be in the same state, depending on which way you drive
 

katamari

Ideal_Rock
Joined
May 18, 2008
Messages
2,949
What type of grad program is he entering? If it is either a Masters only or an intensive PhD program, I would not advise you moving to be with him. If it is a Master''s program, it will be done soon enough, and the distance isn''t too bad to keep you from seeing each other weekly. If it is an intensive PhD program, I also wouldn''t recommend moving because he won''t have time to be with you, so there is a chance that you might come to resent having to give up your job (if you are anything like me, that is).

In my field, having a long-distance marriage, at least for some time, is incredibly common, and I see it succeed all the time. It takes commitment, and brings issues with it, but if you are willing to work with it, there should be no reason why a healthy relationship couldn''t survive it. You also should have some very open and honest discussions about job and life plans (both long-term and short-term) to see when you could likely be together, what that means for your lives together, etc. One of you will eventually have to make sacrifices, more likely both of you, and you will have to make sure the relationship means more to you than what you might be sacrificing. These types of discussions can be difficult because sometimes it brings to light that you will be delaying or forfeiting things you really want, but it seems to me like the kind of conversations you would want to have with someone you are marrying anyways.
 

JulieN

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Premium
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Date: 3/8/2009 5:30:16 PM
Author: katamari
What type of grad program is he entering? If it is either a Masters only or an intensive PhD program, I would not advise you moving to be with him. If it is a Master's program, it will be done soon enough, and the distance isn't too bad to keep you from seeing each other weekly. If it is an intensive PhD program, I also wouldn't recommend moving because he won't have time to be with you, so there is a chance that you might come to resent having to give up your job (if you are anything like me, that is).


In my field, having a long-distance marriage, at least for some time, is incredibly common, and I see it succeed all the time. It takes commitment, and brings issues with it, but if you are willing to work with it, there should be no reason why a healthy relationship couldn't survive it. You also should have some very open and honest discussions about job and life plans (both long-term and short-term) to see when you could likely be together, what that means for your lives together, etc. One of you will eventually have to make sacrifices, more likely both of you, and you will have to make sure the relationship means more to you than what you might be sacrificing. These types of discussions can be difficult because sometimes it brings to light that you will be delaying or forfeiting things you really want, but it seems to me like the kind of conversations you would want to have with someone you are marrying anyways.
This sounds right to me about the moving, but I think that if an intensive PhD program means he doesn't have time to be with her, then they should delay their nuptials until after the end of his program. What is the point, exactly, of being married but LD?

I would not want to be in a long-distance marriage... a lot of ladies have said the first year(s) are the hardest. It shouldn't be unduly harder.

I also agree, a 1 hr commute is nothing. Saying that commuting 1 hr is too much is basically saying that your job is more important than your partner.
 

mochamamasita

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jan 14, 2009
Messages
110
Hi guys,

I''d like to thank all of you for your comments. You guys really put things in perspective and now that I''ve read your comments I agree that an hour isn''t really that long. I think that I''ll either push back the timeline, or we could live together half way in between his school and my job. I guess that my final decision really depends on whether he gets accepted to the grad school near me, or the school near him (It''s a Masters Program by the way). Well, I''ll keep you guys posted regarding whether he gets into either of the schools. Thanks again for your comments
.
 

Dreamgirl

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Mar 25, 2008
Messages
5,070
That's a tough situation. If the two of you want to get married, he should really consider the schools close to you and forget about the ones that are further away. I'm sure he will get into one of the schools near you. If he doesn't, then perhaps he can re-apply or take grad courses online to be with you instead of LDR...or, I'd hold off on marriage until he is finished with school...(but that's just me)
 

OneAngryElf

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jan 14, 2009
Messages
37
I was just about to put my whole story up when I realized my sister (Haven) had already replied above!!!

It''s such a tough decision to make. We struggled at first when I decided to go away for school but in the end, this is the program that is right for me and he respects that. I am so thankful for his understanding because he is as committed as I am to making it work during the next six years.

Best of luck with figuring it out, I hope it works out for the best!!
 
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