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Why You Must Un-Love Your Ex

“It’s hard to tell your mind to stop loving someone when your heart still does.”

Everybody who has ever experienced a relationship break-up knows the pain that lies beneath this sentence. I certainly understand it very well.

I think that it describes one of the most difficult things in life – letting go of someone whom you still love so dearly.

It’s the classic struggle between heart and mind.

The heart has no other knowledge beyond what it feels. And in feeling, it is absolute.

The mind is rational, it takes into account many things – our experiences, our intellect, our knowledge about past and future. It usually claims to know better.

When it comes to break-ups, however, we really have a hard time deciding to whom we want to listen. Even WHEN we know better, it’s the heart that usually wins.

How is it that we trust the heart more than the mind when the person we love has left us?

The answer is obvious.  We are overrun by emotions. Emotions we cannot control for the time being.

So, unfortunately, we do what our heart commands. We don’t allow anything to come between ourselves and the love we feel. Not a person, not advice, not a thought.

We listen to the heart and want to experience this love.

But what happens when love towards a person is not reciprocated? Does it thrive, does it die?

The answer again is obvious – it’s a huge waste of time and energy.

So the question is, why would we waste time and energy on someone who doesn’t love us back, when there are literally thousands and thousands out there who might be a much better fit for us than our Ex ever was? (I can feel your resistance, but trust me here, ok?)

The answer is not so obvious.

Maybe because we have difficulties with change, maybe because we are sentimental… but most of all, probably because we are sensitive human beings.

So it’s understandable that we listen to the heart.

But is it acceptable that we suffer?

I believe that we have a right to fulfillment and happiness, and that our actions should align with this right.

Keeping that in mind, we don’t really have a choice. There is only one way to go.

We MUST “un-love” our Ex.

We MUST let them go, and start the recovery process.

If you feel resistance in your yourself while reading this, just ask yourself, “what is the alternative”?

Is it years of romantic suffering and longing for the one person in the whole wide world that is the only fit for us?

Let me tell you, my dear friends, life has taught me otherwise.

I learned that it is so simple, (and so difficult), to start.  Write the No-Contact Letter to your Ex, and cut off contact completely.

After that, you throw yourself into the roller-coaster ride of the recovery phases.

It’s not quite the easy way out, but it’s the right thing to do.

“If someone wants to leave you, let them go!”

You must “un-love” them in order to open the way to a new future. A future with someone who deserves you and who appreciates the person you are.

Always tell yourself, when in doubt, what to do – if someone wants to leave you, let them go. If they decide that they don’t want to be with you, then let them go, (you cannot stop them anyway).

I know that it’s hard and feels wrong to ignore the heart. But in this case, you just should. Your rational mind is your friend right now.

Start to “un-love” your Ex now, and you will reach a point soon when heart and mind are in sync. I promise.

Until then, have patience and faith in your recovery.

Please tell me what you think in the comments below.

Your friend,
Eddie Corbano

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116 Responses to Why You Must Un-Love Your Ex

  1. Mark January 21, 2015 at 7:05 pm #

    I have been doing no contact with my ex girlfriend for about 3 weeks now, she tried contacting me about a week and a half ago i gave her a call back and she acted stupid as if she didn’t call so we didnt really have a conversation… i’m feeling good at times but theres nights and mornings where i miss her so much and i can’t get her out of my head. I wasn’t the best boyfriend and i admitted that but i feel so guilty and worthless that i wasn’t good enough to get a chance, yet i feel i can never stop loving her even though im only 19 we had been dating for 2 years and there is just so much emotional attachment as she helped me get through my parents divorce. All my friends and family just say it will take time but i have no idea how much longer i can go i honestly have no other girls to talk to and my guy friends are just fed up and annoyed with hearing how much i loved her… to top it off i had gotten her a job near my work about a month ago and we also go to the same gym but i’ve been avoiding going to not run into her. i just miss her so much and i wish she would to..

    • Vi February 1, 2015 at 7:01 am #

      Hi Mark,
      Im no relationship expert, and so what I have to say probably has no use for you… but i just want to tell you i am going through something so similar to you. my boyfriend of 2.5 years recently broke up with me, and i was not the girlfriend i should have been. he also helped me get through my parents divorce, and he took care of me when i needed it most. but i never gave back and he got tired of it. but hey you know what, take this as a lesson for your future relationship. who knows whats out there? and you are only 19!! im 28 already and i still believe i can only take this as a lesson for a better future relationship. you will be ok, things will only get better from here.

    • Lori September 7, 2015 at 5:11 pm #

      Hi Mark. I have no idea how you are right now or if you have gotten over her already. But I have to tell you this, it is both okay and not okay to miss her. It’s okay because well, what you felt was true so that would be natural. And missing her would make reality slap you in the face. With the fact that she’s gone specifically. I know it’s hard. It is soooo damn hard. You try and find ways or signs that she might be missing you. “Maybe she misses me but she’s fighting it” “maybe she’s missing me but is just waiting for me to step it” … Maybe maybe maybe.. They’re all useless anyway. Have you ever thought that if she does love you like or more than you do, she would’ve done something about it? Have you ever imagined someone do something or think the same way you do? What would you have told them? And it is not okay because sometimes, we’re just being too strong for the wrong reasons. No matter how hard it slaps you in the face, sometimes you even take it as motivation to hold on. And that is what keeps you from getting better. What keeps you from receiving what you really deserve. Yes, you may not be the best boyfriend there was, yes you may not be what she wanted you to be. But you definitely deserve someone who will be there for you through thick and thin. Someone who will put up with your mistakes and correct them. Not someone who will let you go. Not her Mark. Not her. It’s a huge world out there. And it is far better to look out through that open window rather than stay in that confined space of hope. Not only that it is so small, you’re not gonna be able to breathe, it is also uncertain. I mean. Where’s the deal in that? Take chances Mark. You’ll find her. It’ll work out. And you’ll thank yourself for living another day when all you wanted was to die for her. Goodluck :))

      • Haywhy November 5, 2016 at 3:27 pm #

        Wow! This just spoke to me right now. Thanks Lori

  2. Donna February 3, 2015 at 5:22 pm #

    I think the most important rule for me was not to get involved with someone until I was completely over my EX. This is important. It is not fair to the other person if we are still have feelings for our EX. It’s not fair to compare everything they do to them. In the long run when you do find love again it will be for real…

  3. Tanya February 3, 2015 at 9:57 pm #

    I’m 2 weeks into my break-up from a 2.5 year relationship. I ended the relationship as it was very unhealthy for me, with constant accusations of cheating. I’m struggling very hard to unlove my ex. I can’t seem to let go of the idea of what it was supposed to be. He moved on with someone else 4 days after the breakup. I can;t even imagine being with someone else right now. My head tells me he was not my soul mate but my heart says otherwise. I’m having a hard time listening to my head. How do you cope knowing that he moved on so quickly when you can’t think of anything else but him.

    • Vic February 6, 2015 at 7:39 pm #

      Tanya I went through the exact same thing… A little different was that I was left for someone else…twice by the same person. I know what it’s like to see the person you love with someone else. From experience please don’t talk or have communication with him it will only hold you back and each time you are pressing the reset button on your recovery
      You are very brave to see that, that relationship was not healthy and you got out
      You have the courage many people unfortunately lack
      Just know this…he yes moved on but that doesn’t mean he has emotionally he’s only moved on physically bec let’s face’s a rebound
      But the day YOU move on it will not only be physically but emotionally as well
      Take your time to grieve and cry
      But please don’t go back 🙂
      Best of luck!

  4. Tanya February 10, 2015 at 10:37 pm #

    Thanks Vic. I did go back. We had a fun Saturday night together and it was then I realized I wanted him back. I told him. He told me I was the love of his life. He said we should start back slow and just be FWB for now. Initially I agreed but after further consideration, I realized that our intentions were not the same. I told him last night, that we could be friends but with no sexual benefits. He hung up the phone on me, and is now ignoring me. I guess tomorrow starts day 1 of NC as it’s pretty obvious that friendship was never his interest.

  5. Vic February 11, 2015 at 8:32 pm #

    Don’t be so hard on yourself either; I understand completely what you’re going through. It took me several going back to realize that the way he viewed me was so different from the way I viewed him, especially what he wanted from me. It hurt and I was on the same boat as you
    But through lots of meditation and just time for me I realized that I didn’t deser all of that. Please don’t take responsibility for his actions. With time you will realize that it was him with the problem not you
    I know you can do it!

  6. Bill May 3, 2015 at 3:52 am #

    I’m married for seven years long and my wife gave me the worse sentence of “I don’t love you” so I tried move out couple times back and forth coz she really confuse if she still love me or not and so it’s hurts me more and more every time I go back thinking it’s gonna workout I moved to another state just to clear ma head finally but after 3 months she came too and for one short month she said she don’t love me and I had to make her love me so she left and ask if I love her I should chase her so I start my 60 no contact and I’m thankful that I found Eddie hopefully I won’t make the same mistake taking her back

    • Uto May 9, 2015 at 8:12 am #

      Bill I have the same situation as you 7 years married hahaha let me know how urs going I’m 10 day mc now lol good luck

  7. Pricila May 6, 2015 at 6:44 pm #

    My boyfriend of 2.5 years wasn’t the best you could say, but I always had a problem viewing myself with self confidence and he came along and he said all the things I wanted to hear. I fell for him but he on the other hand just used me. We broke up. And it was mutual the relationship just wasn’t functioning and it was unhealthy. I find it so hard to nit talk to him to not miss him, I find myself hoping he’ll realize how much I’m worth and what he’s missing out on but I doubt he ever will. I texted him yesterday and asked to talk to him on the phone, he agreed and he called me but to my astonishment all he wants was a booty call..he asked if I wanted to be his whore and I said yes because I missed him and I felt that was the only way to have him with me even if I knew deep inside it was wrong…i regret it so much I’m not a whore , I dont deserve to be treated that way..i know realize its time to do NC no matter how difficult the urge is to txt him or call I’m tired of feeling hurt and worthless.

  8. Mulalo July 9, 2015 at 11:19 pm #

    hi I have been in a relationship for 2,5 yrs nd last month only to find out that my bf impregnated another gal
    all along I thought I was his steady cz he introduced me to his family nd dey only knw me but well I was wrong I have been a side chick for those past years I thought m strong I wasn’t worrying much oh no I was wrong m so in pain ryt nw

  9. Hanna July 25, 2015 at 8:26 am #

    Hi I was in an on-off relationship for 4years. I admitted I cheated on him on year 1 because I thought he wasn’t really serious at all cause I found out that he has been keeping secrets from me and that my friends told me that he and one of my friends were going out behind my back. (He denies it but my friend herself confronted me about it ) Dont get me wrong cheating is a very wrong thing to do. No excuses. I get that now. I asked for a second chance after that, I did everything to keep us going. On year 2 we were in a long distance relationship. He moved to another country. Things got more complicated. He was kind of controling. He didnt want me to go out with my friends. He has access on my facebook account. He easily gets jealous over a guy liking a post, a picture. He had broken up with me for several times. Ignoring me when I fail to do his rules or favors. Whenever we fight he would hostage me of my past. He would say he cant be blamed for his actions because of what I did everything on year 1. I feel that i should understand him and that he was right that if did not cheat he would probably have trust. I do feel awful about that and he keeps reminding me of that whenever we’d argue. I think he feels like I deserve to struggle or to bear his temper or whatever it is that he puts up because I had done him wrong. And I asked myself, how long will I have to settle for things like this 2 or 3 more years? Will i always be held hostage of my past ? How will I assure him that I’m way way far better than the persn I used to be. I keep telling him that I’m tired being thrown back in the past but he still does. I felt like I was emotionally abused. The controlling, manipulating, blaming was very draining and frustrating. So we broke up, but for the first few weeks, i felt guilty.. there was resentment. I did not want to leave but we cant stay that way.. i wanted to fix it. But i guess he was okay with the break up. I knew then, he started posting about being single and loyalty, he was against women and all things i thought was very hypocrite of him. Im in in an emotional roller coaster ride about ths break up but its best if this would be the final break up. No turning back anymore. I’ve given many chances on our relationship for us tofix it but it just wouldnt do. I’m on day 42 of NC. It is still hard but it wasn’t as hard as day 1 to 30! Keep praying for self love and trust yourself that you can do it.

  10. Hanna July 25, 2015 at 8:30 am #

    Let me clear that up *he was against hurting women. Like domestic abuse.

  11. matt October 21, 2015 at 11:23 am #

    hi eddie. thanks for all the insights about break ups.

    i was in a relationship with someone from 2010-2011. we broke up and we had NC for about 2 months. then we met again at a mutual friend’s wedding. the spark came back. and we back to being friends while i was still having a feeling towards her as she was seeing another person.

    during our friendship (from Oct 2011- Sept 2015, recently), i still invested in her (time, energy, money) in order to win her back. my mind and my heart was in battle all the time. i constantly fighting with myself whether she’s still into me or not. it drained me out. left me feeling frustrated more than ever. and boy, was i wrong. i was treated like a doormat. as if i didn’t matter. at some point, i felt like i was desperate, asking her to hangout with me. i didn’t blame her because it was my own fault. i gave her the opportunity to treat me like that. i was too nice because i was still in love with her and sadly, she didn’t reciprocate.

    a month ago, we had an argument and i thought enough is enough. i picked up my last pieces of self respect and dignity and blocked her everywhere. i no longer message or email or call her. i even quit whatsapp group (we have 3 groups of mutual friends) and deactivated my facebook. i still see our mutual friends but only if she wasn’t there. if she’s there, i just bailed out. i didn’t really care much about bailing out cos to me, it’s me who matters now.

    a week ago, she emailed me saying she’s sorry for what she said when we had our argument and she hoped that i’m doing well. i replied after a few days saying that an apology is nice of her but it’s not needed because i’ve left everything behind. and i wished her the best. i feel that’s the closure for me. and reading all your articled on breakup makes me feel a lot better. so, thank you for putting some senses into my head.

    i will keep my chin up, get better and walk away to a better future and partner.

  12. Maria S. December 19, 2015 at 3:52 am #

    I followed Eddie’s advice and wrote the no-contact e-mail, keeping it short, formal but polite as advised. I felt guilty about it for days afterwards, getting sudden urges during the day, where I would wonder if I did the right thing, if I was being cruel and unfair, if he needed me as a friend and I abandoned him, if I was being selfish, mean, etc etc. After a month and a week of no-contact where things are slowly (emphasis on slowly) starting to get into perspective, I realize these are just excuses to try and contact our exes again. Eddie is right in the article though, let’s assume we don’t let go, what then? Are we going to keep spending precious time of our lives loving someone who doesn’t love us back? And is it really that person we love, or the idea of loving them? Given the fact that they left us, and are probably moving on with someone else. Reason and mind is the way to go, I can confirm that. I kept an iron grip on my emotions when they were at their worst, and I’m grateful now that I didn’t humiliate myself any further, and didn’t drag myself deeper into the depression of the breakup. They’re the ones who dumped us, who didn’t understand or appreciate us, who weren’t willing to put in the effort of making the relationship work. So why should we feel guilty about taking care of ourselves? We don’t owe our exes anything. Just as they don’t owe us anything, which is why they decided to leave when they felt it was the best option for them.

  13. camille February 8, 2016 at 7:47 pm #

    It was 2 months since me and my ex broke up..but until now i still love him..i dont want 2 love him again but everytime i still remember him..we were 2 years and it was the long relationship i was very hard 2 accept everything and it was very sad seeing him happy of what he is doing even it was not a good thing to do..i was keep on forcing myself but until now i still love him..i tried 2 reach him again but he is hard and he told me he dont care for anybody..he told me he dont have a heart already..he say too much things just to hurt me..but sometimes i saw him caring..sometimes makes me laugh..i dont know..i want to forget him..i was keep on praying..but i dont know how to get over was really hard..

  14. mae June 2, 2016 at 10:39 am #

    I was dating a person with narcissistic personslity risord er 6 yrs ago. He dumped me but we never stopped seeing each other. He doesnt see or sleep with anyone else, and never disrespects women or makes me feel unattractive. I dont see other people and we have the same amazing sexual chemistry as day 1. I love him and know he doesnt feel the same and never will I am way above average in intellect and it saddens me that I have accepted being a nobody to someone I love so much just to keep them when they wont commit again.

  15. Dwayne Coetzee June 7, 2016 at 12:57 pm #

    hi there, my ex fiance left me last year in Feb after a 4 year relationship. we have a 3 year old son together.
    after a massive argument and constant little hints that she wanted out, she finally left, leaving her son behind.. a month passed and she took him from me, but that did not last either, as she very quickly gave him back to me.. He has been living with me since then, so almost a year and half now.. I’ve been alone ever since as it’s very difficult to meet anyone willing to start something when there is a 3 year old child in the mix.. it’s hard being alone and raising a child alone, so I have many moments where I doubt myself and find that the letting go is an impossible task for me.. She started making contact with him again two months ago, via phone calls and occasional visits at my folks or her mom’s place, I avoid her as much as I can to help me recover. unfortunately I cannot have full NC because of our son and when she messages me that she wants to phone him, I have no choice but to respond, I do not answer the phone as I give it to him immediately to speak to her… so yes here I am a year and a half later and I am battling to let go of someone I clearly know has moved on a long time ago. She has been in 3 relationships already, first one was not even a month after we broke up. I just hear these things from people, I do not stalk her.. so yes sometimes I feel left behind, with no possible chance to ever meet anyone again while she is having boyfriend after boyfriend.. the latest one is since February this year.. All I wish for in this whole wide world is to be able to let go, accept, be happy that we had what we had and wake up knowing I can go on without her, I don’t want her back because she has been with very dodgy people and surround herself with groups I have no respect for. we also never had a reconciliation and closure chat as she cannot speak about these things, trust me I have tried in the past to no avail…. I just want to close this book, learn what I have to and forget her… I feel lost and hopeless..

    • Catherine July 1, 2016 at 11:37 am #

      Hi Dwayne,

      I hear you. My ex of 8.5 yrs (2 kids) had an affair and 4 weeks after meeting her broke up with me, moved in with her the next day! On Mothers Day (2 months ago) he left, the one day of the year supposed to be for me. I had no idea it was coming. My behaviour post hasn’t been great (pleading and professing my love) and today is only Day 1 of reduced contact (as obviously can’t do NC with kids) but I feel it’s a turning point.

      I have the kids full time/ work full time with the exception of about 4 hours per week when he comes. So that makes the possibility of moving on quickly difficult as you don’t want a revolving door of gf/bf that your kids see. But I don’t believe that those who move on quickly are completely over it. They are distracting themselves, good luck to them.

      You are doing the right thing, taking time, focusing on your son, allowing her access.

      As you said you said you don’t want her back, you are worth more. Just focus on other things that keep you happy, your son, friends and family, your community. Find the things you always wanted to do and never did and go for it. Then when the time is right, your book with her will have closed and a new one ready to be opened, you may not even realise until its right in front of you. But it will come. There will be others like us in the mix that have young kids (mine are 4 and 5) and realise that another child is an asset and a thing to be treasured.

      Good luck and stay strong. Single parenting is not easy. But you are the bigger person for it and the right person will respect that. Your son will respect you in the long run too and no quick fix partner can beat that.

  16. M July 14, 2016 at 12:30 am #

    It’s been 9 months since when I do not contacted my ex (neither the other way). And 10 months since I moved out from his place. And about a year since we decided for good that I should start searching my own place. And about 1,5 of a year since when we started talking about breaking up. From then he was more into this idea of breaking up than I. Maybe it was because of that we were living in his place? I don’t know… What I wanted to say is that I still miss him very much. I think the time with him was the happiest in my whole life. At least the first year togeather. I never before felt so happy. I thought we will be togeather forever. I wanted to. Now, it’s been so long with no contact with him (I decided to cut the contact – I couldn’t deel with the excouple-friends situation anymore). And I feel like it’s been yeasterday… I was in a short relationship right after cuting the contact, it distracted me from the pain, but after I finally ended it (couldn’t engage emotionally) the whole pain is back again like it didn’d got any less… I can live the life, can deal with things, but I feel constantly the hopeless lack of all those things connected with his presence in my life during the happy times. I am happy that I’ve experienced all the happines but at the same time I cannot just accept the fact it has beed ‘taken’ away from me. At some point he stopped loving me – I got myself to that conclusion lately. Because all the time I just thought that he was being more rational than I, that he listend to his mind, not heart. Now I think I was wrong with this. Actually I don’t know what was the point of writing this. You cannot help me anyway, can you? I know all the things I should know, but it still hurst, I still cry sometimes, I still hope he sudenly wakes up with rebirth of love to me, but would I be able to trust this love again if even it could happen? I would be paranoied with fear of going through this all again, I think. Anyway, how much longer can I grief loss of that past happiness? Did the short relationship interrupted my recovery? And why, if yes…? There is so many questions that I don’t even know if the answers are any important…

    • Chris July 15, 2016 at 8:53 pm #

      Hi M.
      I have complete compassion for you, because I have been in your situation. But what I have come to learn is that the most important relationship is the one with ourselves. I have become my own best friend. Any relationship that we have with others, no matter how wonderful or how awful, are mirrors for how we see ourselves. If we are feeling abandoned, how are we in some way abandoning ourselves?. This could be a wonderful opportunity for you to get to know yourself. And to even fall in love with yourself. Your own soul loves you unconditionally. If you could get to a place where you feel good about yourself, and where you feel whole and complete without needing anyone outside yourself to make you feel valuable or lovable, I guarantee that if you still want to share that love with someone he or she will be there. Because they will be a mirror for you. Unfortunately most relationships on the planet are built on feeling incomplete. We believe the other completes us. The problem with that is inevitably there becomes a codependency. Codependency is not really love. The best of luck to you.

  17. Meredith November 6, 2016 at 10:14 pm #

    It’s taken me three years to finally START to realize I’m better than this. We were together 7 years and unfortunately work together. He broke up with me in an email (ass) and was on to another in a month. He is still with her. He has constantly, for three years tried to keep things going on the side. I admit I have slipped a few times and paid the price. I still love him & of course I get the “I see you in my future, not her.” Ummm….ok, but does she know that and so what am I supposed to do just wait & get older.

    He’s a jerk and I can’t help but love him but he’s a jerk. You have to get to a point when you realize your self worth. It took me 3 years to get her. I finally realize I’m better than this. I have a lot to offer and if he is sticking it out with who he is with, fine….time to finally, once and for all move on. For me, it was all about self worth, self love (as corny as that is). I’ve ready every article, still get emails daily from this website and until I realized who I truly was, what I was worth and what I wasn’t going to stand for anymore, I was an emotional mess.

    I would email him over and over and he would either not reply or replay with one sentence. He told me I was on a roller coaster and I was. Totally. I was willing to just wait for him but get upset that he was treating me this way – he was just being him – I was allowing him to do this. Advice is given by everyone and it’s great and friends are great to listen to you talk about him for the 5 millionth time and to listen to you cry and to tell you how great you are and how they want to kill him for you….but until you realize how awesome you are, they will win. I know, I’ve cried enough tears over my ex in the past three years to fill the ocean. I hated him, I loved him, I wanted him to hold me, to be what we once were. Now realizing we never could. There are women out there that can look past cheating and lying and deceit – I’m not one of them. For the longest time I was willing to look past that and be the one he was cheating on her with. How wrong is that? VERY. I want more for myself. I deserve more for myself. I’m 45, I’m not 18 or even 30 – I thought he was it and nobody else would be good for me. Good lord I hope someone out there is better because if he was it, I’m going to cry forever!!!!

    Love yourself. You know in your heart, in your gut what is right for you. It takes awhile for your heart to catch up to your head but it will, I promise you. Three years is a long time to pine away for someone….especially when that someone has moved on with someone else.

    If I could get back that time I wasted, well that would be awesome. But I learned a lot about myself during those three years. It takes two to start a relationship and two to end it. Nobody is without fault but don’t be to hard on yourself. WE are human, we make mistakes – even if that means meeting him in a parking lot 🙂 I’m not proud!

    Just think how great the next relationship is going to be. Life is full of lessons and we don’t know what tomorrow will bring. You will get there, for all of those that are still struggling – you will get there.

    I was text book case – I was a walking cliché. I hated myself and hated the weekends because I knew he was with her and at least during the week I got to see him. I was pathetic but with each rejection from him, with each smack in the head from my girlfriends – I learned, I got stronger. Now it’s easier to talk to him, to see him. Of course it does help that I know his girlfriend is not a very nice person and his family and friends don’t like her (still not proud) very much.

    I’m rambling – just hang in there, cry, eat, cry some more…stay away from hallmark movies……IT WILL GET BETTER!

    love yourself, forgive yourself, recognize how awesome you are & every day it will get better.

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