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11 year old (6th grade) bedtimes?


MDL
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Hi!

 

My boy has been hanging out with some PS kids and is balking about his bedtime and his lack of pop culture (tv shows, movies, pop music). He is lacking the pop culture because I categorize most of it as twaddle. We have it under advisement....

 

But I would love feedback about how much sleep your 11 yo (boy, if it matters) needs and what are "normal" bedtimes for that age. He is an early riser, so I like to keep his cicadian (sp?) rhythm in sync.

 

Currently, he goes to bed c. 8:15 and wakes between 5-6AM.

 

TIA!

 

 

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I think when you homeschool that entirely depends on when you/he need him to be up and when he needs to go to bed to be able to get up at that time feeling rested.  Every kid is different.  Typically middle schoolers start shifting so that they actually stay awake later into the evening and are frequently more alert at that time but need more solid sleep later into the morning but that isn't true for everyone.  The main thing is if your child is on a schedule that is conducive to getting things accomplished and feeling rested.

 

DD goes to bed at about 9:30pm each night and naturally wakes up around 6:00-6:30am.  DS, on the other hand, has always needed more sleep.  If he were to go to bed at 9:30pm he would probably sleep until 9am.

 

If you don't need your son up at 5am, then I don't see why he couldn't push his bedtime back an hour or two.  

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Thanks OneStep. I don't need him to be up at any specific time most days. (Mondays will start CC in a couple of weeks, but that would just mean up by 8am).

 

Another thing is that Daddy and I are early to bedders, and would like an hour or two of alone time together[emoji848]

 

 

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Edited by MarthaL
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Thanks OneStep. I don't need him to be up at any specific time most days. (Mondays will start CC in a couple of weeks, but that would just mean up by 8am).

 

Another thing is that Daddy and I are early to bedders, and would like an hour or two of alone time together[emoji848]

 

 

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Well, that last part might be an issue.  Would it be possible for him to stay up later but hang out in his own room?  Is there something of particular interest to him that he could work on there?

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It sounds like the amount of time is reasonable, if he is doing well with it.  My 11 year old goes to bed, aside from high summer, between 8 and 8:30 and typically is up at 7:30 or even 8.

 

If he wakes up at the same time no matter what it is a lot harder to change the bed time.

 

FWIW, I think a lot of ps kids don't get enough sleep time.

 

 

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My middle schooler and high schooler are supposed to be up a little before 8. We send them to their rooms if they are still hanging around downstairs between 9-10. I want lights out by 10. We're not fanatical about it though if they are still doing stuff, as long as they are settling down and getting there.

 

8:15 sounds very early if there is no reason he needs to be up at 5:00. (It would be normal on a farm, LOL. )

 

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Mine go to bed late. My neighbors with kids in public school gets them to bed after 9pm and the middle school bus comes at 7:30am.

 

DS11 (7th) sleeps at 11pm and wakes at 8am because I wake him up. Or else he wakes at 11am.

DS10 (6th) sleeps at 11pm and wakes at 7am or earlier himself.

 

ETA:

As for pop culture, my boys know about the latest electronic games, gadgets, some family movies, and watch the evening news with us.

Edited by Arcadia
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My parents withheld any sort of pop culture when I was growing up. I always felt left out. As an adult, people make references to culture in the 70's and 80's, and even though I grew up then, I was not a part of the culture. I resent it.

 

Would you allow him to be a part of the culture if it were 1850? Or 1600? Because, it is a real loss, in my personal opinion, to withhold culture of the time. Your child will not get to be 75 and be able to tell his grandchildren to great grandchildren what life was like. Now, I agree with you if he is wanting to be involved in "fringe" things...but mainstream culture is an educational thing that I think people should be allowed to engage in. I would not simply had a smart phone to an 11 yr old or such, but I would certainly allow a few TV shows, current music, and the popular toy of the year. 

 

edited to add: I never owned a Rubics Cube, had glitter shirts or rainbow shirts, or a Cabbage Patch Doll, or anything. I could not even have stickers for a sticker collection like all the other girls I knew. I did not get to have long hair when the other girls did, or a curling iron and the hair cut in the 80's. Nothing. 

Edited by Janeway
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At 11, my kids have been in bed by 9 pm and up between 6-7 am. 

 

I'm not understanding about the pop culture. Are you saying that he has never watched any movies or tv or listened to any pop music? Ever? And he's just now discovering this, because he has public schooled friends for the first time? So does that mean you have only had "like-minded" homeschool friends up until now? I think I would be less concerned about the pros & cons of pop culture and more concerned about that homeschool bubble you've fallen into. It sounds like maybe you've started moving into a larger circle of friends & acquaintances, and that's wonderful. Exposure to diversity and different family cultures is usually a good thing for older kids, and I'd be surprised if some exposure to pop culture didn't naturally follow.

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8:15 would be on the early side for 11 y.o.  9 is probably closer to average for that age.  Maybe compromise with 8:45 and see how that goes.

 

For the grown-up alone time, at some point you will have to let that go and find another route/timeframe, though you might consider other options, like quiet/reading time in his room before bed.  (I am a big believer in early bedtimes, but now that we have teenagers, dh goes to bed before I do.)

 

As for the pop culture, that would have made sense to me back when we were growing up, but I'm not sure my ds13s ever watch TV... internet computer games are their thing.  My ds10 watches a little bit of TV, but there are so many channels these days that I doubt he has school friends who all watch the same shows.  Mostly he prefers to watch sports.  (ETA, for context, we have virtually no screen restrictions in our house.)

Edited by wapiti
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We have one dual enrolled in homeschool and middle school. I send the dual enrolled one to bed at 9:30. The other is devices off, lights out at 8:30. One is up at 5:00 to watch cartoons (which don't start come on until 6a), the other is up at 6 and on the bus about 7:15. We don't begin schooling until 8.

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My parents withheld any sort of pop culture when I was growing up. I always felt left out. As an adult, people make references to culture in the 70's and 80's, and even though I grew up then, I was not a part of the culture. I resent it.

 

Would you allow him to be a part of the culture if it were 1850? Or 1600? Because, it is a real loss, in my personal opinion, to withhold culture of the time. Your child will not get to be 75 and be able to tell his grandchildren to great grandchildren what life was like. Now, I agree with you if he is wanting to be involved in "fringe" things...but mainstream culture is an educational thing that I think people should be allowed to engage in. I would not simply had a smart phone to an 11 yr old or such, but I would certainly allow a few TV shows, current music, and the popular toy of the year.

 

edited to add: I never owned a Rubics Cube, had glitter shirts or rainbow shirts, or a Cabbage Patch Doll, or anything. I could not even have stickers for a sticker collection like all the other girls I knew. I did not get to have long hair when the other girls did, or a curling iron and the hair cut in the 80's. Nothing.

Thank you for this. It's not that I am keeping him in a bubble, but attempting to curate information that he receives. I don't want to shelter him so much, but want what he does encounter to high quality. He does get exposure to various tv shows (jimmy Fallon clips, popular movies, and shows that grow him in some form). What I'm objecting to are the really base shows that glorify stupid or inappropriate behavior.

 

Kimmy Schmidt he is not[emoji6]

 

Over the weekend he watched Pair of Kings, and now holds it in high esteem. From the few minutes I watched and what I read on common sense media, it offers no substance. We can find better sources for slapstick comedy, which I think is what he wants. I guess my point is he doesn't need to have first person knowledge of ALL of pop culture....a slice will suffice[emoji4]

 

 

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At 11, my kids have been in bed by 9 pm and up between 6-7 am.

 

I'm not understanding about the pop culture. Are you saying that he has never watched any movies or tv or listened to any pop music? Ever? And he's just now discovering this, because he has public schooled friends for the first time? So does that mean you have only had "like-minded" homeschool friends up until now? I think I would be less concerned about the pros & cons of pop culture and more concerned about that homeschool bubble you've fallen into. It sounds like maybe you've started moving into a larger circle of friends & acquaintances, and that's wonderful. Exposure to diversity and different family cultures is usually a good thing for older kids, and I'd be surprised if some exposure to pop culture didn't naturally follow.

No, not at all. He has some exposure, but I think he was just feeling a bit like an outsider because he wasn't familiar with all the shows and movies his friend talked about.

 

He plays mine craft, Pokemon, etc. but I've restricted screen time to encourage getting school, chores, etc done in a timely manner. It's amazing how fast things can get done for mine craft time....but I don't want to hold a carrot for him all the time, either. We have been struggling with finishing things (at an acceptable level) in timely fashion. He loves to read and play with Lego or in the yard, and that can really suck up the time in a day

 

Thanks to everyone else who offered their kids bedtimes. We are discussing it. I like the lights on idea. But, he has the idea he will watch tv....[emoji848]

 

 

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After age 6, I never had "bedtimes" for my kids. I had a time when I was no longer available; at that age that was around 8pm.

the kids could be in their rooms doing whatever they wanted, as long as it did not disturb anybody who wanted to sleep.

They quickly learned to self regulate, since they had to get up in the morning.

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We don't have bedtimes per se, either.  My goal was 8:30 but...yeah, that never happens.  All four kids (ages 7, 8, 9 and 10) are in bed usually be 9:30.  The 9 yr old boy does ok with less sleep, and often will use his reading light and read until much later.  The 10 yr old girl is usually sound asleep within moments of hitting the pillow.

 

Because we have barn chores that have to be done, they get up earlier than if we didn't have barn chores.  Usually around 7.  I'll be bumping that up for school to 6:30 so we're not starting our breakfast/morning routine stuff too late.  

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I think your son wakes up earlier than most other kids, so an early bedtime makes sense.

 

Even adults with early wake-up times adjust their bedtimes accordingly, if they can.  I know adults who go to bed at 9pm, which is earlier than my kids' bedtime.  Whatever works for the individual.

 

My kids are 9yo.  For us, a 9:30pm bedtime is the earliest workable time due to our daily schedule.  But we usually get up after 7am.  And, the kids would not mind sleeping longer if they could.  (Nor would I.)  We just can't seem to make it happen.

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I think you are doing fine wrt pop culture.  Nobody sees every show out there.  Even when I was a kid in elementary school, the others would come and talk about this show or that show that they saw, and I hadn't seen it.  Probably because I was watching some other show instead.  And that was when there were only 5 channels.  :P  Let's be real, most of those shoes are junk.  :P

 

My kids don't watch TV generally, but they hear enough from their buddies to get a clue what they are "missing."  They have lots of DVDs with shows of all sorts that I feel are worthwhile for cultural literacy - not just "today" pop knowledge but historical knowledge.  They have internet access and they use it to access popular tripe.  IMO if your kids are out in the world hearing about pop twaddle, they are doing fine.

 

Every kid thinks the grass is greener on the other side.

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Thank you for this. It's not that I am keeping him in a bubble, but attempting to curate information that he receives. I don't want to shelter him so much, but want what he does encounter to high quality. He does get exposure to various tv shows (jimmy Fallon clips, popular movies, and shows that grow him in some form). What I'm objecting to are the really base shows that glorify stupid or inappropriate behavior.

 

Kimmy Schmidt he is not[emoji6]

 

Over the weekend he watched Pair of Kings, and now holds it in high esteem. From the few minutes I watched and what I read on common sense media, it offers no substance. We can find better sources for slapstick comedy, which I think is what he wants. I guess my point is he doesn't need to have first person knowledge of ALL of pop culture....a slice will suffice[emoji4]

 

 

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I understand what you are saying. Obviously you need to do what feels right for you and your child.  I would like say, though, that from what I have seen not everything has to have "substance" to have value.  Some of the books I read at that age might not be considered substantive in a traditional sense but I found value for me personally in reading them.  And in some instances they helped me to find common ground with others and to enjoy sharing with each other based on what we had read.  Some of those books I now read with my own kids and still find value in reading them.

 

The same with TV.  Maybe the Donnie and Marie Show wasn't terribly deep or meaningful but our entire neighborhood was singing songs from that show and all of us kids put on our own variety show afterwards.  We wrote scripts, practiced skits, created songs, created costumes, etc.  We worked hard to create and rehearse our show and didn't have a single bit of help from adults (except for the very kind neighbor that lent us her home for all of this).  We included kids from many ages and we spent weeks prepping and rehearsing.  It was a full production and we invited people from the whole neighborhood.  I learned a lot and had a blast.  I don't think we would have even thought about it or had any desire to put in that much effort if we had not been watching that show.

 

Just thought I would share.  Anyway, good luck and best wishes.

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8 would be impossible because the extra curricular stuff is at night.  That might be one reason a lot of the other kids aren't going to bed that early.  By the time everyone gets home and eats and all that it's late.  Then if they have any kind of sports or whatever...it's even later.  Then homework.  As a homeschooler this might be less of a factor for you. 

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My 11 yo is in bed by 930. Lights on until 10 or so. I'd like them ask to be in bed by 830, but that doesn't Seem to happen.

 

She's up between 7 and 8. She would like to stay up and watch one episode of.... And sometimes that's good, maybe once or twice a week.

 

I go to bed around 10. Dh closer to 11-12.

 

Any kid that is up before 7, needs to be completely self sufficient and quiet. 5 is way too early.

 

Is there a reason he is up that early?

Edited by athomeontheprairie
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8 would be impossible because the extra curricular stuff is at night. That might be one reason a lot of the other kids aren't going to bed that early. By the time everyone gets home and eats and all that it's late. Then if they have any kind of sports or whatever...it's even later. Then homework. As a homeschooler this might be less of a factor for you.

I'm finding this to be absolutely true for us. There is just no way anyone here is hungry before soccer practice (I tried) and we don't get home until after 7pm. Even if we don't have practice, 6:30 is really the earliest anyone eats here.

 

Ds has to be in his room, quiet and reading by 8pm. We have asked that he be asleep by 8:30, but now that I'm reading these other responses I'm thinking that's maybe too early. My kid does seem to be lying in bed awake for awhile and seems to be up early-ish no matter what time he goes to bed. I'm going to have to ponder this a bit for us.

 

I sympathize with the desire to have alone/quiet time after the kids go to bed. If it makes you feel better, I've talked to my mom about it and she talked about how that was tough as we kids got older. I think the "quiet in your room" or maybe even quiet in the playroom or whatever type rule.

 

And yeah...popular culture. I'll be among the chorus encouraging you to make sure that your kids at least have some shared context/culture with the people they'll live with as adults. There is something to he said for having that shared sense of "belonging" with other people outside of your own family.

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I don't think there is an issue with cutting out some shows, even if other kids see them.  My kids wanted to watch THe Walking Dead because their friend was allowed - no.  And not just because they would have nightmares.  It doesn't hurt to learn sometimes you don't need to do what everyone else does. 

 

A lot of reality tv is really bad and I wouldn't let my kids watch it - not just that it hasn't positive values I think it has a lot of negative value.  There are some exceptions though so I wouldn't make a blanket

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During the school year, my 11 year old goes to bed around 9:00 and wakes up at 7:00 am.  My 13 year old does too...but has trouble sleeping, honestly.  But they're in the same room so what are you going to do.

 

In summer we aim for nine but sometimes go to bed later...it's hot in Texas so sometimes we do things outside late because I don't get up early well.  And they wake up whenever they want and are usually up before I am. 

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My Dd is 11 and is shifting to a later time frame, staying up later and sleeping a bit later.

 

On a night when we are not out in the evening, she is usually ready for bed, reading or drawing or playing quietly by about 8, but not in bed asleep til 9-9:30. Occasionally later. I don't make her turn out her light at any particular time. She is learning to self-regulate. 

 

She gets up between 6:30 and 7 most days.

Breakfast here happens around 7-7:30 and we begin school at 8.  

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My 11 year old (and my 9 year old for that matter) are hanging in their rooms starting around 7:30pm - not forced that's just how it works.  Lights out is generally 9:30pm, but they can request to stay up longer reading.   They usually wake up around 7am.

 

I'm curious why you are so careful of what he sees and does to make sure it has value but you allow Minecraft and Pokémon?   We love both around here, but it doesn't seem to fit into your other restrictions.

Edited by Where's Toto?
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I think you are doing fine wrt pop culture.  Nobody sees every show out there.  Even when I was a kid in elementary school, the others would come and talk about this show or that show that they saw, and I hadn't seen it.  Probably because I was watching some other show instead.  And that was when there were only 5 channels.  :p  Let's be real, most of those shoes are junk.  :p

 

My kids don't watch TV generally, but they hear enough from their buddies to get a clue what they are "missing."  They have lots of DVDs with shows of all sorts that I feel are worthwhile for cultural literacy - not just "today" pop knowledge but historical knowledge.  They have internet access and they use it to access popular tripe.  IMO if your kids are out in the world hearing about pop twaddle, they are doing fine.

 

Every kid thinks the grass is greener on the other side.

 

Whenever my kids ask about something I am not thrilled with, If I can I will give them a negative taste of it.  "Mom, what's Saturday Night Live?"  I will tell them how silly/stupid it is, then show them the dumbest clip I can find.  As long as I don't make a big deal about it, they don't usually care too much.  They just want a general understanding so they have a clue when friends talk about it.

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My 11 year old is in her room / reading in bed by 8 and lights out by 9pm. Usually she's actually asleep before then, but her sister (9) is still reading until actual lights out. Different kids are different, but in our house everyone is always up between 6-7 - and since we have a small house and loud little kids, the big kids don't really have the option to sleep in.  :glare:

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I also have an 11 year old 6th grader. 

He is quite immersed in pop culture: he loves keeping current with his games like Minecraft and Pokemon Go, pop culture figures, movies, music, etc. I think it has a lot of value to him socially- being homeschooled is so far out of most kids' experiences, and he's not into sports (the other thing that lots of boys bond over) but being able to talk about who is about to take down the Pokemon gym down the road or their theory about Stranger Things or the new Twenty One Pilots single gives him some sort of common social currency. 

As for bed, he doesn't really have an official bedtime. He more or less self regulates. In general I'd say he's asleep by 10ish most nights and wakes around 8am. I do ask him to go to bed a little earlier on Tuesday nights, however, because we have to leave the house by 7:30 every Wednesday morning to get to piano by 8:00. 

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Well I have to ask, what is the "pop culture" of the time, exactly? We live very rurally and ow as the exposed as a kid and I don't regret it one bit. I grew up in a ranch 70 miles from civilization and I don't miss out on conversations and I went to a public school, albeit a very small one room school, but I didn't feel left out when I got to college. Most people wished they had had my life, not vice versa. My kids only watch shows from my childhood for the most part and there is no way they would be allowed to watch any of the junk on television now. My son plays mine craft a little, and we often go to the movies. As for bedtimes my 10 year old (almost 11) needs more sleep than other kids and always had. We are also early risers so her dad and I go to bed at 9:30. On weekends, she goes to bed at the same time, or slightly before, but most of the time it's around 8:30. She wakes at 7 on the dot.

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My 11 year old (and my 9 year old for that matter) are hanging in their rooms starting around 7:30pm - not forced that's just how it works. Lights out is generally 9:30pm, but they can request to stay up longer reading. They usually wake up around 7am.

 

I'm curious why you are so careful of what he sees and does to make sure it has value but you allow Minecraft and Pokémon? We love both around here, but it doesn't seem to fit into your other restrictions.

Well, mine craft has some creative value. And Pokemon is such a phenomenon I feel like he needs to know about it in order to fit into current society. We actually haven't been able to get the parent account working for Pokemon (still trying!!)...but he has played it with other kids.

 

 

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My 11 year old son, who is considered a 6th grader...but he turns 12 in January so he's an old 6th grader, lol... is upstairs by 8 and his dad reads to him for a bit and then he reads to himself until about 9.  A year ago it was all an hour earlier, but he came to us and told us he was just lying there in the dark, unable to sleep.  So we moved his bedtime back an hour and things are much better. 

 

Having gone through this with his older brother, I know things will change soon. He's going to start staying up later and sleeping later. But for now we're keeping it where it is.  He's very good about putting himself to bed earlier if he's had an exhausting day, so I don't worry about it.

 

This is the age when I personally started allowing some pop culture stuff to come in. For my kids and their peer group, that meant some computer games that they all play. It gives my boys something to talk about with their peers. Mostly the kids talk about stuff that happens at school and sports. My boys don't play sports and are highly dedicated ballet dancers.  Add in the homeschooling and it meant a lot of social isolation.  They just had no place to enter the conversation.  So, by adding in some pop culture stuff, like a couple of very popular computer games, Doctor Who, some Percy Jackson books, etc they were able to find their tribe of very nice geek boys, lol.  And when they are around kids they don't know well, they can at least participate in parts of the conversation.

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My older kids are night owls, but even if they weren't, activities go past 8. DS turned 11 this summer. The past spring, baseball games often started at 7:30. Currently football practice is 6-8-8:30. Some games will start at 7:15, so they'll end at 8:30ish. We won't get home until after 9. Then he has to shower and wind down to sleep. Oldest DD's drama class in years past ended at 8:30 and we'd get home around 9. I don't know how kids who have to be up at the break of dawn manage.

 

Without activities, they're up later in summer with the longer daylight anyway. It's still very bright out here at 8. We are in the pool until 8:30-9 many days.

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My 11 yo 6th grader doesn't get home until 9 most week nights from gymnastics. She eats dinner, we do family worship, she takes a shower and usually takes some school work or a book to her bed by 9:45 or so. She doesn't stay up super late (But I don't monitor it-- I just know she is alseep when I go up around 10:30/11) but has requested to do some things then to wind down and also to have some free time in the afternoon before she goes to practice. She wakes up usually around 8:30 on her own.

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