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View Poll Results: What is your Birthorder in your family?
First Child 90 49.45%
Middle Child 32 17.58%
Last Child 43 23.63%
Only Child 17 9.34%
Voters: 182. You may not vote on this poll

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  #46  
Old 01-03-05, 10:02 PM
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More catch-up:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Coral Rhedd
Vinceptor, I am not good at the math statistical thing,
I'm not good enough at the math/stat thing (& I have an advanced degree) to disentangle the poll. If you are an only child, for example, there are three legitimate respones--(1) first, (2) last, and (3) only.

Psychologically, it also makes quite a difference to have siblings or not: "Only child" does not make that distinction. A good setup for a poll would ask (1) birth rank (1st, 2d, ...last) and number of siblings.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rainraven
(psst, vinceptor, I know this is off topic, but what DOES off the scale mean?)
Heck if I know. Ask the site admins, who set up this label scheme....


Ken
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Old 01-04-05, 08:58 AM
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um, but, isn't it true that a second and even a third child can be an only, if there is a significant differerence in ages. I'm not sure what number this might be but I am aware that it is an important factor.
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Old 01-04-05, 12:46 PM
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Psychologically, I would think so. 15 years between sibs (extreme example) does put some distance between them--you could say there are fewer opportunities to bond when there are fewer things held in common, and things change so rapidly in childhood little differences in time are big differences in experience, personality, ideas of fun, etc. Of course, for that reason the psychological distance between a 30-year old and 40-year old (siblings) would be (on the avg) less than that between a 5-year old and a 15-year old.

This is neither here nor there WRT the neurological basis of ADD, although interactions between sibs would be profoundly affected by the presence of the condition, and how many had the condition, vs. not.

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Old 01-04-05, 03:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vinceptor

This is neither here nor there WRT the neurological basis of ADD, although interactions between sibs would be profoundly affected by the presence of the condition, and how many had the condition, vs. not.

Ken
I would tend to agree. I think, that while birth order and placement in the family constellation can have some impact on add, there are probably other, more relevant factors. I've come across some research regarding twins (can't remember the details ) but even then, there is not necessarily a guarantee that one twin will have add if the other one does.

Now if you want to talk about adoption and how that relates to adhd, well, that can be relevant. And I have first hand knowledge...
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Old 01-05-05, 03:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Deeperblue
I think, that while birth order and placement in the family constellation can have some impact on add, there are probably other, more relevant factors. I've come across some research regarding twins (can't remember the details ) but even then, there is not necessarily a guarantee that one twin will have add if the other one does.
Heavy sigh....that's what I remember from my (abortive) graduate studies in Social Psych and Medical Sociology--too many cross-factors, not enough twins....

Quote:
Originally Posted by Deeperblue
Now if you want to talk about adoption and how that relates to adhd, well, that can be relevant.
Now there's a conjecture for which it seems it would be (relatively) easy to get stats in support: impulsivity==>teenage pregnancies==>"disproportionate" # of ADDs among adopted children....

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Old 01-05-05, 04:42 PM
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now we're getting somewhere...rate for adoptees could be maybe 20-30% but please do not quote me...this is all open for research...but can be intriguing.

and yes I have heard of the impulsivity notions about the birthmother but i am really very, very skeptical and careful about this concept. The idea goes that because of the impulsive drive toward sex.... and a baby is created. I don't see how this is a clear correlate...rather here I think that we are making a value judgement. It just so happens that a woman gets pregnant; it happens all the time. and most woman do not get pregnant because of add and most women do not have add, either. (except us, of course but certainly excluding you ) and I am not a birthmother who placed a child for adoption...I am the adoptee.


some connections point to early trauma and loss which relate to "deficits in love, support, nourishment, affirmation that are experienced (for the adoptee infant) as life threatening." forget the source. Note that i said the perception of the infant. It is the infant who feels as though his/her world is falling apart... some great works relating to this experience are by DW Winnicot a pediatrician/psychoanalyst (beautiful-poetic)

Deutsch et al (1982) also has studied and refers to issues of trauma and loss

found some other info from the spence-chapen.org site.

other stressers for the birthmother which one can only imagine, I believe, probably contribute to a chaotic environment for the adopted infant and therefore, perhaps adhd. but who knows.

Classic twin studies might give us some good insight. The studies of the twins separated at birth.
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  #52  
Old 01-05-05, 05:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Deeperblue
...and yes I have heard of the impulsivity notions about the birthmother but i am really very, very skeptical and careful about this concept. The idea goes that because of the impulsive drive toward sex.... and a baby is created. I don't see how this is a clear correlate...rather here I think that we are making a value judgement. It just so happens that a woman gets pregnant; it happens all the time. and most woman do not get pregnant because of add and most women do not have add, either. (except us, of course but certainly excluding you ) and I am not a birthmother who placed a child for adoption...I am the adoptee.
I see what you are saying. But I'm not at all confusing you with your birth-parents. All I'm referring to are publicly proclaimed stats (ref CDC) about the "increased risk" of ADD teenage girls to get pregnant before marriage. Of course, it has to be carefully stated to avoid value-judgementalism. The quantitative factor is that a higher proportion of unwanted pregnancies associated with ADD would, without making any other assumptions, correlate to a higher proportion of babies put up for adoption by these mothers, simply because they would produce a (slightly) greater number of babies that could be adopted.

The second link is the body of evidence that most (but not all) occurances of ADD are related to (but not exclusively caused by) inheritable factors. I would like to see a study looking to see if there is a greater-than-the-population-average chance of an adopted child having ADD than non-adopted children, which could be taken (but not conclusively, of course) as additional evidence for a genetic component. And, for credibility, you'd really have to relate back to the ADD status of both birth-parents, which runs into (legally constrained) privacy issues.

But, studies of separated identical twins (many of whom were raised by non-genetic parents--i.e., adopted) are classic ways to scientifically separate the effects of family culture and history from those of genetic components.

And, as you pointed out, even with that approach you'd have to have a matched control group of non-ADD adoptees to separate out the unique impact on a child's mind of the (frequently traumatic) discovery that he or she has been adopted.

Ken
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  #53  
Old 01-15-05, 03:51 AM
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birth order

hi, well I am the first borne in our family, but I was not the first, my Mom had a misscariage and so I dont know if I am the first or middle child.
All I know is I was very much wanted. I had this conversation with my parent not to long ago,because my parent's think that the miscarriage was the loss of their "boy" and they always say to my in a joking way, "chris will be our boy." well that sometimes bugs me and other times well I like to hang with my dad and do things with him.

sorry i am rableing, but I think that Adhd and add have to do with a tramautic situation in the persons life, but then im not sure. I dotn know how it could have to do with the birth order because then every person that was born would have it in the same sequence, right? Am I making any sense? aunt chris
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  #54  
Old 02-08-05, 12:38 AM
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Vinceptor and DB, really interesting ideas here.

I have some thoughts...First, while a study on the correlation between ADD teen girls and early pregnancy may be interesting, I dont see that it would produce reliable stats in terms of the population as a whole unless you measured the level of ADD prevalance in the guys who impregnated said girls. Without that, it seems you'd be missing some extremely important data. This would be especially true if the plan was to then follow up by doing a study of the children born as a result and measure the prevalence of ADD in them.

As for adoption, I am the mother of an adopted 6 year old daughter. She was found on the side of a highway in China, with a severe cleft lip. I didn't get her until she was nearly two. Prior to that, she existed in an orphanage which was stretched to the limit and hardly what we would consider a "nurturing" environment. Don't get me wrong. They did the best they could. Both the Chinese Adoptions Affairs Department as well as my own agency attempted to convince me to take another child because they were concerned that at her "advanced age of 22 months" (isn't that heartbreaking when you think about it) and the added "challenges" I would face trying to get her the proper care for her birth defect, I was biting off more than I could chew. Further, they felt she may well have extreme difficulty adjusting emotionally, and on and on and on....I am not accustomed to losing battles that are in my mind, monumental. She was my daughter. I fought them tooth and nail and brought her home. Four years later, she is beautiful, happy, healthy, curious, and shows absolutely no sign of ADD or any other condition/syndrome/disease...choose your terminology. My point is that I don't believe one would find it true that an adopted child is necessarily more likely to suffer from ADD at all. I think that it MAY be more likely that this part of the population is studied more because it's simply easier to isolate them. Same with twins. I have a set of them also. I honestly don't see a correlation. But that's just my experience.

Here's what I do believe, and it goes against the grain of a lot of research (which I have yet to be impressed with in the ADD arena anyway) and many other points of view. It is merely my opinion. Please remember, I am just as nutty as anyone here so hold the missile fire...I'm still trying to recover from the Eagle's debacle of last night...Back to the topic, I happen to believe that ADD is one of a number of defense mechanisms a child may or may not develop as a means with which to cope with their perception of a particular circumstance or environment. For me, it was an escape from trying to live up to expectations that I felt were too high to reach...and in reality, weren't really there to begin with. The fact that I FELT they were there was what mattered.

I was the 5th of 6 children, the first of 2 girls. At the age of 8 or 9 I came across a box of congratulatory cards my parents had received when I was born. It seemed to me that every breathing member on the planet had sent pink notes with bows and hearts on them telling my folks they were thrilled that, finally, they'd gotten their sweet PINK SURPRISE. Yeah, right! I felt immediately like a failure, which was nothing unusual, because my true surprise for them had been question after question after question. I had a "change the world" complex that could drive a non-adder to distraction. My mother would buy me baby dolls and I would strike deals with poorer girls who were impressed with the name Madame Alexander (I think that's it...see I can't even remember, but if you're a woman you MIGHT know what I mean), couldn't afford them, and were more than willing to give me every book they owned in return. Furthermore, I spent my entire childhood trying to be the girl that held everyone else in the family together because I truly thought it was my solemn duty. This was BS of course. But I was convinced. And actually, because I all but programmed them to over time, everyone did come to me with their troubles. I know all of my siblings secrets. I keep them to myself. The few times I've made major bamboozles (that they've found out about that is) it's practically been announced on a loudspeaker from the roof of my fathers business. My parents even complained to me about each other when I was a child. My sister, a surprise 3 years after me, filled the spot that I was supposed to. She and my mother are 2 peas in a pod to this day. I am the "brainy pain in the *** with an opinion on everything" while she is the "laid-back easy going" one. Strangely, guess who gets the call, even now, whenever anyone has trouble. ME.

None of my siblings have ADD, although I'm convinced my father does. One of my sister's 6 children has ADD, one has Aspergers....so far. None of my 4 children have anything but a healthy dose of curiosity, spunk, and childhood sassiness occasionally, which is dealt with in swift order. I just don't buy the birth order thing. I'm really not sure I buy the genetic possibility either, although I could process that into logic far easier than birth order.

My siblings had the same childhood experience as I did. The difference was in the perception. In other words, I would be more interested in a study that somehow quantitatively and qualitatively measured the prevalence of ADD in adults who felt as children that they carried the responsibility of the well-being of others on their shoulders than I would in a study that looked at birth order, adoption, twins, or any of the other factors. The issues simply aren't mutually exclusive in my mind. Certainly, all of it's interesting.....but when I think of my ADD, I am convinced that it has much more to do with my emotional perception of my world as a child than it does with anything to do with placement in the family, genetic factors, or anything else.

I believe that everyone develops their way to cope with what they experience. Some become shy, some become the class clown, some develop a stutter, some escape into Autism, some are nervous and frightened easily.....I think I handled it by allowing my mind to wander. So in a sense, yes, I'm saying that I think in a lot of ways if we really want to look to the root of our ADD, we don't have to travel any further than the nearest mirror. And that said, I simply don't view it as a bad thing. When I look in the mirror I like who I see. I learned a lot about life during those times as a child when I "checked out" of the immediately present world. I also consider myself fortunate that I didn't end up going any of the other, and let's face it, far more difficult routes. I wouldn't trade the insight gained through ADD for anything on God's earth. And honestly, the more I learn about it, the more blessed I feel. Therefore, while I find all of the information interesting, in many ways, I suspect it's a lot more hoopla than fact.
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  #55  
Old 02-08-05, 02:40 PM
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great post Free. While I would love to completely agree with you, I can't because I really believe the the jury is out on this one. I being the adoptee, can only tell you from my own experience-- research, personal as well as anacdotal that there is in fact a correlation. There is a growing body of knowledge that can also give insight. It is truly complex. (I wonder if I am on the same page as you...am I? Do I get what you are saying. Clarify if I am missing a point here. Sometimes I miss vital pieces of the conversation.)

I would think that if the tendency toward ADHD--or any brain dysfunction-- is present and then add on the traumatic early life of the infant, the potential grows by leaps and bounds. Thus environment plays a role in this regard. It might all depend on the environment.

I am an adult who was, as an infant, left in a hospital until I was 2years of age and then placed in an orphange until I was 3.5 years of age. I can relate that my genetic history has a major significance in the senario. plus my father died in prison. sister had twins. one is schizpohrenic and the other is drug addict. birth mother [never meet her] was very scattered and had an extremely chaotic life. on and on...

I believe that the AAC is going to present this topic at their next conference.
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  #56  
Old 02-08-05, 03:50 PM
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I agree with DB--good post, free2bme--I don't usually respond to long posts (too impatient?), but this one is an exception.


Quote:

...I dont see that it would produce reliable stats in terms of the population as a whole unless you measured the level of ADD prevalance in the guys who impregnated said girls.
That would be hard to justify leaving out of the research, indeed. I, too, worry about people overinterpreting what little evidence is available. But I am just as worried about people ignoring the data entirely....


Quote:

...I am the mother of an adopted 6 year old daughter. She was found on the side of a highway in China, with a severe cleft lip....Four years later, she is beautiful, happy, healthy, curious, and shows absolutely no sign of ADD or any other condition/syndrome/disease...choose your terminology.
I agree--there is no need to infer any reason for her abandonment other than her physically obvious birth defect. Inferring ADD doesn't add any explanatory value in determining the reasons for the pregnancy.


Quote:

I was biting off more than I could chew.
In this forum, I doubt anyone would blame you...


Quote:

...I honestly don't see a correlation. But that's just my experience.
That's why statistical studies are based on many personal experiences, to reveal the forest behind the trees. In my experience, I couldn't rest with my persistent hunches that I might have ADD, I had to research it (a bad habit picked up in grad school...)


Quote:

Please remember, I am just as nutty as anyone here so hold the missile fire...
That reminds me of some Navy jokes about guided missle shooting disciplines--such as LOOK/SHOOT/LOOK or SHOOT/LOOK/SHOOT. There's also the (ADD?) one that goes SHOOT/SHOOT/SHOOT....XD


Quote:

I'm still trying to recover from the Eagle's debacle of last night...
They came close, didn't they. I was rooting the other way to stay on good terms with my Maine relatives....OK, OK, back on topic....


Quote:

I happen to believe that ADD is one of a number of defense mechanisms a child may or may not develop as a means with which to cope with their perception of a particular circumstance or environment. For me, it was an escape from trying to live up to expectations that I felt were too high to reach...and in reality, weren't really there to begin with. The fact that I FELT they were there was what mattered.
I hear you. IMHO, it's a tough nut to crack, having to decide how much of a person's behavior is a matter of choice or not--I would hesitate, for example, to hold a manic-depressive suffering a psychotic break responsible for his/her actions (the issue is what it takes to make sure no one gets hurt and the responsibility issue is whether the M-D was on meds but slacked off--a common problem, given the S/Es).

It's quite understandable that defences get built for all sorts of reasons--but I also believe that part of the ADD deficit involves a reduced ability to form defenses in the first place (one of the many reasons I believe that ADD is the highest point on the "Autistic spectrum")--defenses help you keep your cool under provocation and rein in any impulses to trash some "bozo" who, in retrospect, really didn't do anything worth getting upset over...


Quote:

I felt immediately like a failure, which was nothing unusual, because my true surprise for them had been question after question after question....I spent my entire childhood trying to be the girl that held everyone else in the family together because I truly thought it was my solemn duty. This was BS of course.
Yeah, those kind of thoughts show up in therapy a lot--and what child hasn't, at some point in their lives, felt the sneaking suspicion that they are really adopted, and their real (and nicer) parents had been killed in a car crash or something. But the question is--is self-blame (e.g.) self-inflicted (by internalizing unwarranted criticism), or self-perception (by internalizing warranted criticism)?

I've found it handy to follow the spirit of the DSM criteria for AD/HD. For example, "everybody" forgets their car keys, or "everybody" has said something they shouldn't have at one time or the other. The difference is how much it is a problem, not that it is a problem that "everyone has." Forgetting your keys is an exception to most people's normal life--in the ADD lane, *remembering* your keys for once is the noteworthy exception. It's the impairment that separates a diagnosed ADDer from "everybody," who aren't really impaired by the "occasional goof."


Quote:

None of my siblings have ADD, although I'm convinced my father does. One of my sister's 6 children has ADD, one has Aspergers....so far. None of my 4 children have anything but a healthy dose of curiosity, spunk, and childhood sassiness occasionally, which is dealt with in swift order. I just don't buy the birth order thing. I'm really not sure I buy the genetic possibility either, although I could process that into logic far easier than birth order.
Yeah, ADD is one of those syndromes that are correlated with genetics but can easily skip a generation or affect one sibling and not the other.

Another idea I use to sort things out is what medical researchers call the "stress/diathesis" hypothesis--which just means that some people are more susceptible to a disorder than others, but also that the disorder doesn't happen without a trigger. So you could have a family history of ADD, and not "get" ADD yourself, even though the genes are there. Of course that gets into the whole sad brouhaha about "environmental triggers"....


Quote:

The issues simply aren't mutually exclusive in my mind.
They can't be--on that we're 100% in agreement.

Thanks for a great post!

Ken
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Old 02-09-05, 12:06 AM
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Vinceptor,

Thank you for the compliment, and thank you for a thought-provoking response. Nothing is easy when you start digging beneath the surface, huh? Personally, I've always found that the digging is by far more interesting than any "answers" we could ever delude ourselves into thinking we have obtained.

And by the way, in the interest of full disclosure and fair warning, my posts are almost always long. I am an impatient reader's worst nightmare. If I think about something, it ends up on a page somewhere. Fortunately, quite amazingly to tell you the truth, I actually get paid for such activity! Thanks for struggling through it. I learned from your response.

Free
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Old 02-09-05, 12:37 AM
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DB, I'm sorry I didn't answer you first, but I didn't see your post.

You convey your experience well, as always. I was not adopted myself, so obviously, we come at it from two different angles. I dont think that either of them is right or wrong. I tend to agree that in many ways the jury is still out on this one.

My feeling is just that the jury isn't coming back into the courtroom anytime soon, at least not with a verdict based on any comprehension of the voluminous factors at stake here. If I have learned anything worthwhile in my life, it is the lesson that finding a "solution" to a problem is sometimes the worst outcome of all. I give it my level best to figure things out, to ponder, to deeply consider all the possibilities. I love the entire process. As I said to Vinceptor, the answers are, in my own humble opinion at least, not nearly as interesting as the journey involved in searching for them. The journey is where all of the opportunities for mind expansion and learning exist.

I hear what you've said and I respect your opinion immensely. I am not rigid in my perceptions or opinions of this issue at all. I have simply lived my own life with eyes wide open. Therefore, I am unable to see how any of the factors that get much of the focus as possible solutions to the ADD equation do anything but provide another variable with which to complicate the algebra.

Holy cow, DB.....I think I actually just used MATH in a metaphor. I must go back and investigate because if I did I am now fully convinced that the unbelievable is truly a possibility!
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Old 02-09-05, 01:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by free2bme

... my posts are almost always long. I am an impatient reader's worst nightmare. If I think about something, it ends up on a page somewhere. Fortunately, quite amazingly to tell you the truth, I actually get paid for such activity! Thanks for struggling through it. I learned from your response.

Free
If I were afraid of long posts, I would not subscribe to a forum full of ADDers. I did not say I don't read them (I at least skim them), or never reply (I might select one point out of many to respond to), just that I'm too impatient to sit down and write an equally long response (but as we know, not always...). My "problem," not yours....

Jus' keep on postin'....

Ken

P.S. If you like long, free-associating, confessional ADD posts, go check out the Newcomer's forum. I swear, everybody is so relieved to find an ADD home they just positively *gush* for pages and pages....
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Old 02-09-05, 04:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vinceptor
I'm too impatient to sit down and write an equally long response (but as we know, not always...). My "problem," not yours....

Jus' keep on postin'....

Ken

P.S. If you like long, free-associating, confessional ADD posts, go check out the Newcomer's forum. I swear, everybody is so relieved to find an ADD home they just positively *gush* for pages and pages....
Funny! You don't have any "problem" (well, I'm sure you DO, but you know what I mean....LOL) I didn't take your comment as though it were a sweeping statement on all posts of say, more than 5 words (perhaps I should increase that just a tad to maybe 5000 in my case)... I didn't think you were busting on me and frankly, if you had been, I would have been cracking up with you ...i actually get quite the kick out of busting on MYSELF for that particular weirdness of mine.

As for the Newcomer's forum, let's see, how can I phrase this in a politically correct fashion (seeing as how I've never tried to do THAT before)? OK. It's like this....I can handle but so much "gushing" before I need something else to talk about. Make sense?

Besides....what makes you think I like READING the long ones....I just can't keep myself from WRITING them! I think that's the 4th or 5th horrendously bad joke I have posted today. And down the stinkin' drain went being PC. Clearly I need a break from this for now....


I have officially edited this post 5 times for your benefit. Frightening, isn't it!!!
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"After silence, that which comes closest to expressing the inexpressible is music." Aldous Huxley

"Those who danced were thought to be quite insane by those who could not hear the music." Angela Monet
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