Men: Financial Limitations During New Single Life - Page 6 - Talk About Marriage
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post #76 of 121 (permalink) Old 12-24-2015, 10:31 AM
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Re: Men: Financial Limitations During New Single Life

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umm, yeah,
1. he wanted to move into my teeny little 2 bed apt that I "shared" with my business
2. and then pay me "something" towards the rent. He never said how much because I "turned" down the offer
3. he also tried to twist my arm to get me to "use his house" as an "office" in the US for my business. No discussion of course as to how much that would cost or who would pay for that.
4. he took the first job offer made to him which was a 50% cut in pay from his (then) current job. He was "leaving" a very large organisation, so it's very possible that they had a sabbatical program that he was trying to use. So that could have been one year in London / a tour of Europe all the while knowing that his job and home are still waiting for him back in the US.

I had not gotten to that point of analysis above in real time, but I did know that I was not going to let some man that I had only known for a year (and LDR at that) take away half of my living space.

Some people accused me of using him and that I was not that into him. Some women can be our own worst enemies.
What you did was smart...there's no doubt that people should protect their assets and stay away from anyone who's coming after your money...period.

I had a very good friend who got married to someone who was her financial equal on paper. The issue was that his money was in an inheritance fund and what he lived off wasn't a product of his hard work...he was a lazy bum....it was a product of his parent's hard work. In reality, while they shared a similar monthly income and lifestyle...she was a worker/saver and he wasn't and she didn't get educated on divorce laws and didn't protect her assets.

So they get divorced and his inheritance money is excluded from equalization but hers isn't. She spent a fortune on legal fees and ended up paying him alimony and a huge portion of her money anyway.

She's remarried and her new husband is a nice guy who doesn't make as much money...he works a city job....but he's a saver and investor and makes the most of what he has and he has the same mindset about working hard that she does. In my opinion, she seems way happier and has way more in common with this guy than she had with the other guy.

Having your own money is important....staying away from people who are after your money is important....going after someone else for their money is often predatory, in my opinion.

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post #77 of 121 (permalink) Old 12-24-2015, 11:05 AM
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Re: Men: Financial Limitations During New Single Life

The best protection may be to avoid marriage the second time around. Most states and some insurance companies honor domestic household partners, and even in some cases the premiums are less for domestic partners than for spouses.

You can draft anybody into a living will, giving them consent to make life decisions.

The only thing I'm not sure about is credit and life insurance benefits for domestic partners.
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post #78 of 121 (permalink) Old 12-24-2015, 11:35 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Men: Financial Limitations During New Single Life

Getting back to the melee about what's a reasonable expectation on assets/earning power, it seems like everyone has a different idea of a safe cushion. My margin of error is several times wider than that of people I know who live in cheaper areas.

We also need to account for age, time to retirement, and expected earning power at that point for someone who is reasonably ambitions.

Holland, I assume your 250k figure would be lower if you were looking at men in the 25-30-year-old range, especially outside overpriced centres such as London, Manhattan, San Francisco, DC, Toronto, etc?
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post #79 of 121 (permalink) Old 12-24-2015, 03:50 PM
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Re: Men: Financial Limitations During New Single Life

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Originally Posted by intheory View Post
Should the answer be an overhauling of divorce laws?
Nope

Quote:
Originally Posted by intheory View Post
No automatic halving of assets upon divorce.

What you brought with you to the marriage, what you contributed during the marriage - that is considered during a divorce.
In most states, only the assists accumulated during the divorce are considered marital assets. So only those get split. Assets that a person has prior to marriage and those that a person inherits are sole property and not split if there is a divorce.


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Originally Posted by intheory View Post
If one partner came with $20,000 and the other partner $200,000, and their earnings during the marriage stay at roughly those ratios; then if they part, the $20,000 person leaves with 10%; not 50%. [Simplistic example to make a point.]
The above assumes that the $20K and $200K is the only assets they ever have and that no additional assets are ever accumulated during the marriage. PlusÖ. That 20K and 200K is separate property. Neither has any claim whatsoever to the otherís money.

In this arrangement, what happens if the person coming into the marriage ends up disabled? If they then end up dependent on the person with lower income, then how do you divide thing if we assume that money is the only thing that counts in marriage? Is that fair to the lower income person who then ends up not only financially supporting both of them but also becomes the care taker of the other?

Marriage is supposed to give a buffer for situations like this, and child bearing and child care. Life can get messy.

If we were to make the financial aspects of marriage like your suggestion, then any women who was a SHAM with the agreement of their husband would be an absolute fool to be a SAHM. It would mean that the only thing that is valued is money.
=========================================
Hereís the way it works right now.

Person A comes into the marriage with $20,000 and person B with $200,000. During the marriage, they accumulated $100,000 in marital assets. And per B inherited $30,000 during the divorce.

During a divorce:

Person A has sole property of $20,000 that they brought into the marriage and the $30,000 that they inherited. So person A keeps their sole property of $50,000

Person B has the sole property of $200,000. So person B keeps their own $200,000.

And person A & B split the $100,000 of marital assets 50/50.

That seems like a fair distribution.

Quote:
Originally Posted by intheory View Post
The higher earner can choose, if they want, to give more. But it is not required.
Marriage is a financial arrangement as much as anything else. Itís very hard to measure how much one person contributes to the marital union because not all contribution is financial. IMO, marriage laws in community property states are just fine. And if a couple wants to tweak them they can with a pre and/or post nup. Or they can just live together.

Marriage laws should be left a they are for those who find value in the way marriage is legally structured. And there is a LOT of value in it. People who marry and stay marriage are better off financially, their children do much better in all aspects of life. So leave it alone.

And those who want to can tweak it.

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Originally Posted by intheory View Post
Childcare would be figured in at a reasonable amount, determined by the courts.
By childcare, do you mean child support? Child support is not only for child care.

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Originally Posted by intheory View Post
I know it seems like a giant reform to make; but there is so much ill-feeling in our society about getting taken financially in the aftermath of a divorce; that it seems we need to do something.???
There are things that are changing. But I donít think that your suggestion above is a good one at all.

One thing that I think really causes problems is that most people have no idea what the marriage laws actually are. They just marry and think its all unicorns and fairytales. Thing like what the law actually is, financial planning, etc. should be taught in high school.

And people need to be realistic. If a man wants a wife who is a SAHM, then he has to realize that he is making a financial commitment to support her and the children. If he does not want that obligation, then donít ask a woman to be a SAHM. And women have to realize that at any time they can be put in a situation where they have to support themselves, their husband and their children (or some combination of that). (Of course the genders can be swapped.)
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post #80 of 121 (permalink) Old 12-24-2015, 04:10 PM
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Re: Men: Financial Limitations During New Single Life

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Originally Posted by intheory View Post
I know it seems like a giant reform to make; but there is so much ill-feeling in our society about getting taken financially in the aftermath of a divorce; that it seems we need to do something.???
When I brought up a spouse who is gold digging and/or hurting their spouse financially I was talking about somethings outside the norm.

For example my first husband and I earned about equal income and had about equal assets when we married. He had a masters in electrical engineering. Then out of the blue he quit his job in about the 3rd years of marriage and because he decided that he was going to medical school. He did not even ask if I agreed with this. I ended up supporting him, our son and paying a lot of his school expenses.. to the tune of about $100,000. He got no loans or other financial aid for medical school.

During those years he insisted on separate bank accounts which I went along with. He was paying the bills in that I would give him the money and he would pay the bills. Much later I found out that he was also using my money to pay his fatherís mortgage and his motherís mortgage. Both his parents had put his name on their property. So basically he was ripping me off to pay for property that he inherited when his parents passes away.

Any money that was left over after he paid our bills and his parents bills he moved into a savings account in his motherís name.

So I put him through medical school ($100,000+), paid for property that I had no claim for, and he moved about another $100,000 of my money into his motherís name so that I could not touch it. He thought that I would never figure out what he was doing. But at the time that I was divorcing him, I stumbled on some financial records that he had hidden away.

Now if we lived in CA when we were divorcing, I would have gotten back the money that I paid to put him through medical school since I did not benefit from his medical school in any way.

The courts would not do anything about the money that he transferred to his mother.

The only thing I got was that I told him that if he was going to fight for half of our home (that I had made most of the payments on) I would then show the courts that marital income was used to pay for her home, so I would ask for Ĺ of his portion of her home and then I would force the sale of her home (In reality I would not have force the sale, I was just wanting to scare him.)

Thatís the kind of thing that Iím talking about. What he did was to rip me off. I trusted him and so did not keep a close eye on what he was doing with the money.

And, now with 100% hindsight, I would have insisted that he get students loans to pay for his medical school and to support himself and contribute to the support of our son while he was in school. That way he could take his loans with him. Shoot, he probably never would have gone to medical school if he actually had to pay for it himself.

There is another type of gold digging that I might address in another post. But this above is the first one I ran into.

For the most part, our divorce laws are fine. The changes that I would suggest are:

50/50 custody whenever possible.

Child support should take both parties income into consideration so that each parent has the same amount to spend on care of the children, as a ration equivalent to the amount of time the children spend with each parent. This is what is done here in New Mexico and its pretty equitable.

Plus there needs to be an expectation that the lower income spouse will become self-supporting within some reasonable amount of time. Thatís usually about half the length of the marriage.. up to about 5 years so that the person can get job/career skills.
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post #81 of 121 (permalink) Old 12-24-2015, 04:26 PM
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Re: Men: Financial Limitations During New Single Life

Quote:
Originally Posted by moco82 View Post
Getting back to the melee about what's a reasonable expectation on assets/earning power, it seems like everyone has a different idea of a safe cushion. My margin of error is several times wider than that of people I know who live in cheaper areas.

We also need to account for age, time to retirement, and expected earning power at that point for someone who is reasonably ambitions.

Holland, I assume your 250k figure would be lower if you were looking at men in the 25-30-year-old range, especially outside overpriced centres such as London, Manhattan, San Francisco, DC, Toronto, etc?
I already said yes to this previously in the thread. When my first husband and I married we were of equal wealth albeit much lower than now 25 yrs later. Financial compatibility (and financial responsibility) has always been important. We worked together very hard as a team and post divorce came out of the marriage with equal assets.
Shame I did not understand back then that sexual compatibility was as important, oh well.
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post #82 of 121 (permalink) Old 12-25-2015, 09:55 AM
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Re: Men: Financial Limitations During New Single Life

Quote:
Originally Posted by gouge_away View Post
The best protection may be to avoid marriage the second time around. Most states and some insurance companies honor domestic household partners, and even in some cases the premiums are less for domestic partners than for spouses.

You can draft anybody into a living will, giving them consent to make life decisions.

The only thing I'm not sure about is credit and life insurance benefits for domestic partners.
This is my thought, too. We can share a household, share expenses, yet not be financially and legally entwined. My employer fully recognizes domestic partners for all benefits, including retirement travel. At this point if I get divorced I don't think I'd ever want to be legally married again. I prefer to avoid the risks that have bit me on this first marriage.

Now, if a fabulously wealthy woman fell in love with me and insisted my name be put on half her assets and we be married, it might be tempting. The risks would be on her, not me.
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post #83 of 121 (permalink) Old 12-25-2015, 12:41 PM
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Re: Men: Financial Limitations During New Single Life

Quote:
Originally Posted by intheory View Post
Should the answer be an overhauling of divorce laws?

No automatic halving of assets upon divorce.

What you brought with you to the marriage, what you contributed during the marriage - that is considered during a divorce.

If one partner came with $20,000 and the other partner $200,000, and their earnings during the marriage stay at roughly those ratios; then if they part, the $20,000 person leaves with 10%; not 50%. [Simplistic example to make a point.]

The higher earner can choose, if they want, to give more. But it is not required.

Childcare would be figured in at a reasonable amount, determined by the courts.

I know it seems like a giant reform to make; but there is so much ill-feeling in our society about getting taken financially in the aftermath of a divorce; that it seems we need to do something.???
The reality of this made much more difficult by each persons perspective of what they contributed. For instance a spouse who comes into the relationship based on the promise to taken care of or provided for should not be punished

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post #84 of 121 (permalink) Old 12-28-2015, 06:37 PM
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Re: Men: Financial Limitations During New Single Life

Quote:
Originally Posted by intheory View Post
Should the answer be an overhauling of divorce laws?

No automatic halving of assets upon divorce.

What you brought with you to the marriage, what you contributed during the marriage - that is considered during a divorce.

If one partner came with $20,000 and the other partner $200,000, and their earnings during the marriage stay at roughly those ratios; then if they part, the $20,000 person leaves with 10%; not 50%. [Simplistic example to make a point.]

The higher earner can choose, if they want, to give more. But it is not required.

Childcare would be figured in at a reasonable amount, determined by the courts.

I know it seems like a giant reform to make; but there is so much ill-feeling in our society about getting taken financially in the aftermath of a divorce; that it seems we need to do something.???
I hope something like this comes about because otherwise I think marriage will cease to exist. The current system is so unfair to men that they will eventually just say "No".

To clarify: we don't need a specific rule of division like this.

What we need is for the courts to enforce whatever pre-nup the parties agree to, including any provision for child support.

If this were the case, then people could decide what they wanted in advance. If they chose one of a standard set of rules (to be defined), then the legal result would be known in advance, and if they wanted a variation from any of the standard sets, then they should be able to have it preapproved before getting married.

Always remember the LD motto: "Sex isn't important!!!"

Last edited by tech-novelist; 12-28-2015 at 06:43 PM.
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post #85 of 121 (permalink) Old 01-02-2016, 05:57 PM
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Re: Men: Financial Limitations During New Single Life

I hopped on this thread to respond to the original question, but now I'm compelled to jump in on the tail end discussion.

US Divorce law has some serious problems, and Men, especially Men with children, are the largest group getting the short end of the stick. And yes, it's bad enough that it should discourage marriage among those aware of it (whose numbers are growing) and in the 'more vulnerable' position.

Rather than write a multi-volume series, I'll just say that a bad acting spouse can financially exploit and destroy the other person without regard to fairness, and in essence the current legal system creates incentives to do so.

(whew... that's enough there)

To the original question: Divorced men of TAM, how did you find single women react to a middle-aged man with financial limitations despite everything else about him (physical shape, personality, social status, engaging career) being "dating material"?

The TL;DR answer from my personal experiences: My financial "situation" (for lack of a better word) mattered to the majority of women I met, but in differing degrees to each person. Three notable takeaways were: 1) The older the woman, the more often it mattered, and 2) it wasn't the absolute amount that usually mattered, but how it compared to their own financial standing, and 3) the fact that it matters is something most women don't like to make obviously apparent.

I probably had something of an advantage in that I was/am on the higher end of the earnings spectrum. I'm not good enough for someone like Holland, as I was only a 98th percentile wage earner (my 10-year AGI average at time of divorce complete was ~$186k/yr) and had been asset-wiped out by my ex (percentile unknown, not great) but for almost all the women I dated, I was seen as economically desirable.

Being a decent earner helped women's reactions towards me, but it was never the only thing. Appearance, physical chemistry, shared interests, etc.. they were all ingredients in the cake too. But there definitely were times when my apparent well-offness (if that can be a word) was a high quality frosting on that cake.

Because of my financial experiences with my ex-wife (think horror story), and the circumstances of my divorce (expensive), I made finding a woman who could, and would, earn her own way an important factor in what I was looking for in a future partner. Some of the women I went out with had kids, and it was clear that providing for them was a priority, and that was a long-term deal breaker for me. As I have my own kids to pay for, I was naturally leery of becoming obligated for someone else's offspring.

When I met the future Mrs. Aunbis, she was a freshly divorced SAHM who was going back to grad school for a STEM degree because her financially irresponsible ex decided to 'retire' on SSDI disability. I made my situation and expectations clear, and she was cool with it. It all worked out, and she was making >$100K at Microsoft when we finally married. I married her for a multitude of reasons, income not being nearly the most significant, but it did matter (to both of us).

I guess my takeaway is that income and finances *should* matter when looking at prospective long-term partners, but it's only part of a bigger picture. Sadly it often takes a failed marriage before we really understand.


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post #86 of 121 (permalink) Old 01-02-2016, 06:17 PM
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Re: Men: Financial Limitations During New Single Life

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Originally Posted by SadSamIAm View Post
So if you met the nicest guy, very good looking, great in bed, very honest, makes you laugh and makes you feel great about yourself you would not help support him? Why not?
I have been out with women who were wealthier than me. I would not recommend it to women as there is likely to be an element of resentment when you cannot indulge them. It might not be reasonable and logical, but that is the way with people.
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post #87 of 121 (permalink) Old 01-02-2016, 06:20 PM
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Re: Men: Financial Limitations During New Single Life

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Originally Posted by EleGirl View Post
From the perspective of one female (I can only speak for myself.)

After my divorce I dated 4 guys. The men were divorced just as I was. Some had younger children, some not.

What we did was that we took turns asking the other out. The one who asked paid. (I hate going Dutch.) I like this arrangement because the asker can plan the date to be something that they could afford. What mattered to me was not how much money a guy spent but how much thought he put into the date.

For example a date to do the river walk and have a picnic basket with wine, cheese and crackers can be as romantic as it gets. Or finding the best hole-in-the wall taco/burrito place in town is fun too.

Now if the dates are all going to his place to watch tv because it's essential free... too much of that is not cool... no thought, no effort. And it speaks of the goal to have sex, not to spend special time together.

IMO, it's not the money that is spent that is the issue.
Imagination can help. When I was poor, there were dates in obscure places with a fully laid table. However, money is more effective. The physical appearance of a woman is important to me and I see the preference for money as little different.
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post #88 of 121 (permalink) Old 01-02-2016, 06:31 PM
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Re: Men: Financial Limitations During New Single Life

Quote:
Originally Posted by Anubis View Post
I hopped on this thread to respond to the original question, but now I'm compelled to jump in on the tail end discussion.

US Divorce law has some serious problems, and Men, especially Men with children, are the largest group getting the short end of the stick. And yes, it's bad enough that it should discourage marriage among those aware of it (whose numbers are growing) and in the 'more vulnerable' position.

Rather than write a multi-volume series, I'll just say that a bad acting spouse can financially exploit and destroy the other person without regard to fairness, and in essence the current legal system creates incentives to do so.

(whew... that's enough there)

To the original question: Divorced men of TAM, how did you find single women react to a middle-aged man with financial limitations despite everything else about him (physical shape, personality, social status, engaging career) being "dating material"?

The TL;DR answer from my personal experiences: My financial "situation" (for lack of a better word) mattered to the majority of women I met, but in differing degrees to each person. Three notable takeaways were: 1) The older the woman, the more often it mattered, and 2) it wasn't the absolute amount that usually mattered, but how it compared to their own financial standing, and 3) the fact that it matters is something most women don't like to make obviously apparent.

I probably had something of an advantage in that I was/am on the higher end of the earnings spectrum. I'm not good enough for someone like Holland, as I was only a 98th percentile wage earner (my 10-year AGI average at time of divorce complete was ~$186k/yr) and had been asset-wiped out by my ex (percentile unknown, not great) but for almost all the women I dated, I was seen as economically desirable.

Being a decent earner helped women's reactions towards me, but it was never the only thing. Appearance, physical chemistry, shared interests, etc.. they were all ingredients in the cake too. But there definitely were times when my apparent well-offness (if that can be a word) was a high quality frosting on that cake.

Because of my financial experiences with my ex-wife (think horror story), and the circumstances of my divorce (expensive), I made finding a woman who could, and would, earn her own way an important factor in what I was looking for in a future partner. Some of the women I went out with had kids, and it was clear that providing for them was a priority, and that was a long-term deal breaker for me. As I have my own kids to pay for, I was naturally leery of becoming obligated for someone else's offspring.

When I met the future Mrs. Aunbis, she was a freshly divorced SAHM who was going back to grad school for a STEM degree because her financially irresponsible ex decided to 'retire' on SSDI disability. I made my situation and expectations clear, and she was cool with it. It all worked out, and she was making >$100K at Microsoft when we finally married. I married her for a multitude of reasons, income not being nearly the most significant, but it did matter (to both of us).

I guess my takeaway is that income and finances *should* matter when looking at prospective long-term partners, but it's only part of a bigger picture. Sadly it often takes a failed marriage before we really understand.
This certainly matches my impression and experience, particularly the area highlighted.
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post #89 of 121 (permalink) Old 01-02-2016, 06:45 PM
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Re: Men: Financial Limitations During New Single Life

I have nothing practical to add here, I just want to say that this was one of the best threads that I have read at TAM. There is a lot of information here, supplied by pretty much everyone that has posted.
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post #90 of 121 (permalink) Old 10-18-2016, 04:31 PM
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Re: Men: Financial Limitations During New Single Life

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Originally Posted by moco82 View Post
Divorced men of TAM, how did you find single women react to a middle-aged man with financial limitations despite everything else about him (physical shape, personality, social status, engaging career) being "dating material"?
I have never met a divorced middle-aged woman who doesn't have financial limitations, so if she found mine a problem, I'd say she's trying to date out of her league.

I was single from age 36 to 41. I drove nice older cars, took women out to modest restaurants, put effort into dates that were more about the outdoors and nature, instead of spending. That also kept me dating women whose preferences were like mine.

There are three kinds of business. Your business, my business and God's business. Whose business are you in? -Byron Katie
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