1. Hwaigon
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    Hwaigon Contributing Member Reviewer

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    Friends come and go...

    Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by Hwaigon, May 7, 2015.

    ...post photos of their babies on facebook and I think sh*t, so we're not kids anymore. Not even teenagers with life ahead of them. We're living that life which once was ahead of us. It's not like I feel I'm old or anything, it's just the first time in my life I've observed life progression. It had never occurred to me before.

    It's a literal time-leap to go from a memory of us friends hanging around after art course on our way home and then see them with their kids.

    I see our paths laid out before us, mine branching off into a wholly different direction. There's no need for "like"; straddling of life paths is entering new worlds.
     
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  2. KaTrian
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    KaTrian A foolish little beast. Staff Supporter Contributor

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    My old school friends are either married with children or single/dating, but none of them seem to be married with no kids. Sometimes I'm asked when we're gonna make a lil baby, and it's not easy to say "nah, I don't want one, not right now anyway" without getting weird looks.

    Right now, I have no desire to conform, to be honest. I may not have the mortgage and white picket fence life they've got, but I find myself not caring. The downside is that it's difficult to re-connect with friends who've become family people 'cause they do family stuff, kid stuff, nice stuff. To me they're like vanilla pudding, which is okay, but not as awesome as super hot chili. And to them, I guess I seem to have been left behind, haven't experienced the joys of motherhood and SUVs and the pride of buying diapers like a woman at my age should (I'm 26) and daytime TV or strolls in the park at noon. My co-worker mommies are like "god, when are you gonna make a baby?!" and ask if I want to hold their new bundle, and inwardly I'm like "yuck, a potato-maggot" and outwardly like "aawww, she's so cyuuuute!"

    I guess my biological clock is ticking more slowly or something. I still feel like that dumb high school kid sometimes, and gotta wonder if my old friends do too, even those with kids...
     
  3. Hwaigon
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    Hwaigon Contributing Member Reviewer

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    Must be frustrating, I admit. Your viewpoint is interesting, I had in mind a different aspect of the phenomenon but you made me think.
    Or else, you've put a mirror to my viewpoint and what I'm getting is a reflection thereof.

    Gotta chew on this one.
     
  4. Stacy C
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    Stacy C Banned

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  5. live2write
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    live2write Contributing Member

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    After High School I lost a lot of friends. After College, a lot of my close friends moved away or back home.

    Friends come and go and lately they are all getting married. I am in the wedding business where I get to experience it throughout the years. I am almost 26 and enjoying the life of being in a relationship but not being fully tied down to having a family and such. And honest to god I hope I will not have kids until my parents are not around. I do not trust them on the being grandparents part.

    I am happy to have a friend who is in the same boat as me.
     
  6. Lemex
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    Lemex That's Lord Lemex to you. Contributor

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    When one of your friends is divorced and you still find some joy in getting drunk, playing video games and eating pizza while laying on the floor, then you'll know life is just plain weird. And actually some times in a good way.
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2015
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  7. Kingtype
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    Kingtype Always writing or thinking things XD Staff Role Play Moderator Contributor

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    Children are a handful, I don’t have any and I know that XD. They are a lot of money, a lot of time, a lot of frustrations, a lot of crying and a hell of a lot more responsibility and I'm probably not even touching upon the surface.

    So in a way it can be a blessing you don't have any and since you don't enjoy yourself! Be young, happy and live to the fullest you can.

    Never let people pressure all that apple pie life stuff on you. That is not for everybody.

    BUT

    With that said.

    I (and this is me personally) would actually really REALLY like to have kids. I know that's kinda like the opposite of a lot of the comments on here, but I've always liked the idea of having a family someday. I'm perfectly aware of all the things that might entail.

    Of course if I do have kids I'll probably be eating those words and be like energy exhausted within the first year and I'll accept that to....I'd like to think. But as annoying as children might be, they are pretty awesome.

    If I do ever have kids I'd LOVE watching them take their first baby steps, waking them up on Christmas morning or taking them out for Halloween, their first bike ride or any of that! I admit I've got a bit of a desire to be a family man.

    Which I shouldn't be as I've seen various examples of that life style go horribly HORRIBLY WRONG (My own father and mother as a prime). But I'm just to big a teddy bear not to want a wife (or long term girlfriend) and kids someday :D

    Ya know? I just don't think I want to pass up on that chance. :oops:

    Still though gonna waaaaaaaaaaait a looooooong while if possible lol
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2015
  8. Ivana
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    Ivana Contributing Member

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    But you're still very young! I guess it depends on society and its expectations. It is a bit different here in Serbia. Because of a difficult economy situation, a lot of people decide to wait "for better times to come" in order to get married and have kids. I'm 28 and recently got engaged. We've been dating for more than 8 years and we just recently moved in together. We're planning to get married next year, and to have kids when we decide to, no hurry, no pressure. That's the case with most of my friends, too. Over here people don't usually get married until they're pregnant or in their late 20s/30s, because most of them still live with their parents in their 20s due to high unemployment rate.
    I've seen this pressure of getting married and having kids young with my cousins who live aboard, in developed countries. It is totally different situation over here. Here we're encouraged not to get married young. When someone gets married or pregnant during or right after the highschool people usually pity them. They are all like "you're way too young, you haven't seen anything of life yet", but also starting a family early in this part of the world is not a really good idea because of financial uncertainty.
    Sooo... No pressure, enjoy with you husband in your love and youth :) Kids will come when (if) you're ready.
     
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  9. Hwaigon
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    Hwaigon Contributing Member Reviewer

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    @Kingtype

    Jee! Have I just strummed a wrong string! I was pointing to the kids showing up on fb as a factor of time progression, not merely to open up a
    discussion about whether or not to have kids or, least of all!, feeling ashamed at either not having them or having them.

    But to pick up where you left, my humble opinion is that certain people have certain portions of necessity for enjoying oneself
    and mine is quite low, so in my case the desire for the family has pretty much always been there. On the contrary, what p*sses me off
    is today's trend of presenting kids as an obstacle to someone's career, development etc. etc. My opinion is that those who don't have kids
    should not derive those who do for various reasons and that those who do not have kids for one reason or other have been deprived of
    one hell of life's lessons.

    "...Which I shouldn't be as I've seen various examples of that life style go horribly HORRIBLY WRONG."

    Yes, but since in my apocalyptic view of the world, marriage, family, life and death pretty much stand on the par for me,
    so, if treated with respect and dignity family deserves, it could not go wrong, ever. Yes, I'm implying something had gone wrong
    even before the family itself was established. My honest belief is that when man (I like to use this term for unisex addressment, forgive me) walks on the path of clarity and sincerity, nothing should go wrong.
     
  10. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    It's true that a lot of people around the 26-30 age bracket seem to be having kids. Just yesterday I found out 2 separate acuqaintances on FB are already mothers and a third is pregnant. I know of several more mothers on FB who were once school or university friends. My sister's just had her 2nd child. I'm pregnant with my first (27 atm). So I've not been "left behind" really - I'm sorta on the same timeline as those I grew up with.

    The key though is being content I suppose. I have a friend who longs for a husband and children and she's in her mid-30s - the clock's definitely ticking. In the Czech Republic it seems the expectation is that by the time you're 30 you ought to be married or at least be in a long-term relationship, and like myself she's watched all her friends marry and then have children, and then buy houses. She has none of these but the problem is she longs for these things. She's told me how she doesn't even want to visit her friend who's just had a baby, doesn't wanna hold her friend's baby, because it's just too painful.

    And now I'm something like 7-8 years her junior, happily married and pregnant... sometimes I wonder how she feels when she sees me. It's not that she'd be bitter or angry with me - but she's bitter and angry with life. And I'm not sure there's anything I can do to help her :(
     
  11. Hwaigon
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    Hwaigon Contributing Member Reviewer

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    I know that feeling, though being of different sex and in a different position. When all my high school friends had girlfriends, went
    out clubbing, experienced romances and stuff, I was a lonely, troubled, struggling teenager. One really grows bitter and angry with life, as you say. My path was convoluted in the least but one thing I'd do in such a state - and I did plan to do it just before the breakpoint in my
    life - is to move out. Somewhere far away at best. If a person is alienated in their own country, what better is there to do than to move
    to a different country.
     
  12. Hwaigon
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    Hwaigon Contributing Member Reviewer

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    @Mckk

    You can't do anything for her because you're not the "helper for life" she's seeking. I've learnt that a LOT of the things
    that bothered me when I was single disappeared with the advent of my gf.

    But allow me to draw an implicit inference here, so as not to stir the waters of this forum, there's a lot divine in waiting
    for one's counterpart. Spiritual almost. I've walked that thorny path, each metre of it. I would say it has to teach your friend
    something and unless she does not take up those lessons, nothing will happen. This is own experience, not a hypothesis. Something
    started to happen in my life when I proved - either to higher providence or to myself - that I'm freaking serious about my pursuit of
    happiness. Unless one is, nothing will happen.
    Sidenote: It hurts.
     
  13. Shadowfax
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    Shadowfax Contributing Member Contributor

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    I have to disagree that only when one is serious about the pursuit of happiness (contradiction in terms, anyone?) will one attain happiness (i.e., nothing will happen).

    To paraphrase Shakespeare, "Some are born happy, some achieve happiness, and some have happiness thrust upon 'em"
     
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  14. KaTrian
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    KaTrian A foolish little beast. Staff Supporter Contributor

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    That's really interesting. I think people here in the capital city area don't get married or have children that early. I guess we're more career oriented, plus the living expenses... God! Sure, it's not quite like in London or Oslo, but it's still bad. The friends from my age group who have children now live in the rural area or in small towns where living is cheaper. The women at my workplace who have kids live like 30 km away where they can afford a house. I wouldn't want to live that far. But I can already feel the pressure from my parents who want more grandchildren. At least with my mom I can say, "hey, you were 35 when you had me. I know I was unplanned and you were just fine with one son you had at 24, but still!" :p

    I'm going to meet up with some cousins this Saturday... Expecting lots of "when are you gonna have kids????" questions...

    Don't worry, I doubt anyone can say whether it's a good or a bad idea to have kids. It's everyone's personal choice. I'm super happy for my friends who have kids or are expecting one, but at the same time I prefer not to make one of my own despite the pressure society piles on me and my husband, rendering us left-behind weirdos, lol. There're perks to both, following the most common thread of life (career, family, house) or choosing some of the less common options. The important thing is to be happy.
     
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  15. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Hmm, I'm with Shadowfax on this one - are you actually implying that someone's unhappy because they secretly really don't want to be happy? While there certainly are some individuals out there who enjoy wallowing in their own sorrow in order to get pity, that's certainly not every case. If you could make fate or God bring you a partner by virtue of wishing hard enough, then there wouldn't be so many lonely, single people out there - and fate/God would be a genie in the lamp, a caricature of what it/He is. Your hypothesis also places blame on basically everyone who is unhappy - it's true that happiness is more a case of contentment and perspective, however there are many things in life that are out of your control and those things SUCK. I would not presume to blame them for this.

    There was once I saw a documentary and this reporter asked a poor Bolivian mother living in a mudhut, "So is it difficult?"

    The Bolivian woman looked at her, and began to cry. She couldn't speak. She simply wept at the very thought of the question.

    So maybe she's unhappy because she isn't serious enough in her pursuit of happiness... of work and monetary success, perhaps.

    Or my mum, who once while chatting with me suddenly fell quiet. She stared into space, and her eyes began to tear up. I knelt by her side and asked her what's wrong. She refused to speak for some moments, and then finally said, "I'm just remembering how I used to hug my stomach because I was so hungry. I knelt by the side of the street because my stomach hurt so much from being hungry. And nobody cared. There was nobody who cared."

    Maybe she didn't find happiness until much, much later when she met my dad, because at the time she wasn't serious in her pursuit of happiness?

    So no, I'm afraid I can't agree with you. These people need our compassion, and mercy - not our judgement where we basically say to them, "Well, I'm happy - why can't you be? Clearly you're just not working hard enough at it!"

    Some things are just blessings - undeserved blessings we've done nothing to deserve, and that our actions would not affect in any case. And those of us who are blessed have been given the resources to help, the strength to offer some measure of comfort and love to those who cannot love right now because they're too broken. Our own blessed, happy lives are not evidence that we've somehow done something right - nor is it a trophy to be proud of. I was blessed to have been born into a loving home, a middle-class home where I never had to worry about food, born with intelligence that I never struggled at school, met my husband by chance in a world of people and there's as much of a chance of us never meeting as us meeting, considering we're technically both speaking our 2nd languages and met in a 3rd country where neither of us are actually originally from. I'm blessed to have been pregnant within a month of trying when others have tried and tried and nothing - they yearn and pay for IVF and nothing. I'm blessed that so far, the pregnancy has been smooth and I am without any nausea in my 3rd trimester. I'm blessed that my sister has had 2 healthy baby sons, without complications on her health or that of her sons'. I'm blessed to speak English as a native speaker when I shouldn't have been able to, since I was not originally from England.

    All these are blessings - not because I've been serious about my pursuit of happiness. I've not worked for them, I do not deserve them, and they are not evidence of my right to say to someone, "Well, be more serious about being happy! I'm fine, so you have no excuse." I would not have been more or less blessed with the above had I concentrated on it with all my heart and soul.

    However, I do agree with you that there's nothing I can really do for my friend because what she wants is a partner to share her life with, to love and to be loved, to cherish and live for, someone to hold her and support her and comfort her and for her to serve in return.
     
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  16. Ivana
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    Ivana Contributing Member

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    Yeah, it's interesting, especially regarding the fact that this is still highly patriarchal and traditional environment, where people who dare to say they don't wanna have kids are looked at as complete weirdos. :p But I guess the wars and other s...t messed us up so everyone are simply struggling to survive and are forced to postpone a lot of things...
     
  17. KaTrian
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    KaTrian A foolish little beast. Staff Supporter Contributor

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    That's really sad, though. :( I remember the wars from TV, and I remember reading this book, Zlata's Diary, I think its name was, as a kid. I think the conflict was particularly scary because the civilians caught in the middle led quite similar lives to ours in Finland, so it felt like it could have happened to you just as easily.
     
  18. Ivana
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    Ivana Contributing Member

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    Yeah, strange thing we even managed to stay normal to some degree as a nation. :) But we're going off-topic here. ;)
     
  19. Kingtype
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    Kingtype Always writing or thinking things XD Staff Role Play Moderator Contributor

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    LOL

    Well I'm embarassed now.

    You didn't press on any string or anything :D Buddy, I was just mentioning kids because everybody else was talking about them. Sorry if I said anything wrong with my post! Didn't mean to imply anything bad about you or anybody if I did.

    But talking about kids seemed to be where the convo was going XD

    Sooooo that's what I talked about.

    Anyway nope all strings are good! Though I don't think I implied anybody should be ashamed to have or have not, if I did I must of wrote it wrong. But to be on original topic, time does indeed fly extremely fast.

    Still though sorry to everybody if my post came off bad at all lol
     
  20. Hwaigon
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    Hwaigon Contributing Member Reviewer

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    Nah, take it easy. Thinking of it now, I shouldn't have quoted you but rather make a general comment about the convo's direction :D
    Still learning to express in an imperfect language my thoughts. Not an easy task.

    I'm not able to participate in the discussion now but will elaborate on the inputs later.
     
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  21. 123456789
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    123456789 Contributing Member Contributor

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    Question to all. Is this a western (middle class thing)? specifically, is the concept of reaching late 20s to early 30s, getting a house and kids and (more or less) cutting ties with old friends and maintaining only lukewarm relations with new friends , a western mentality or is that just life in general?

    I ask this because I've heard in Africa(or parts) there is a bigger community mentality, which suggests that things there or in other places may occur more naturally and be more mixed. Here (in US) everything is packaged into phases . This includes your acquaintances.
     
  22. Kingtype
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    Kingtype Always writing or thinking things XD Staff Role Play Moderator Contributor

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    I don't think cutting ties with old friends is like a thing. I mean it happens a lot but a lot of people stay in close touch with old friends when they like have kids or a house XD. Cutting ties with friends are just things that tend to happen.

    Some folks move away or you move away, you lose the same interests or new things come up and you can't be as like free as you once were when life starts hitting hard. But I don't think that works for all the friends.

    Maybe it is a western thing but I just figured a lot of people lost friendships but kept like their same three best friends lol.....I mean I still hang around with the same three dudes I been hanging around since second grade.

    We don't see each other often we still see each other on a weekly basis since we've been out of high school for awhille now. Other people I used to hang around with still live in the area but we've all sort of just drifted apart due to various circumstances.

    All depends on the person at the end of the day when it comes to the friends unless there is a statistic I don't know about. But when it comes to having kids and a house I'd suppose it is a western middle class thing.

    The idea does kinda get beaten into your head.
     
  23. Ben414
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    Ben414 Contributing Member Contributor

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    EDIT: I read that comment wrong. Nevermind.
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2015
  24. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    I've found that as I've got older, I've become more of an introvert. Before when I was at uni, I could hang out with people 24-7 and live on 3 hours sleep and not feel an ounce of exhaustion. Now, at 27, after a few hours with people (about 3 hours max) I'm exhausted and would like nothing more than to go home and be quiet, with the only person I'd like to see being my husband. And I'm not even talking about big groups - just 2-3 good friends. I'm also avoiding big groups - I've never liked big groups to begin with but being fairly extroverted I can hold my own, it's fine, whereas now I'm like, "Meh I can't be bothered."

    Having lived in Prague has also alerted me to the fact that I don't really enjoy chit-chat at all. It's great as an icebreaker and I see its value, but I really don't wanna bother with it unless I believe there's an actual chance of getting to know the person and forming a meaningful friendship.

    And once you're married, you have less time, and then with kids you have even less time. I think time constraints and perhaps a more introverted disposition, at least in my case, means I'm less likely to invest in new friendships.

    It's also in British culture and it seems, from what I've seen, in American culture too, that a lot of people are very distant and their friendliness is very shallow - it's really just politeness. They're not really interested in you at all. I'm pretty affectionate and have little understanding for taboo topics either lol, so I find them hard to get to know, and then pair that up with 1. I dislike chit-chat, 2. time constraints, 3. being more introverted and I'm like, "Meh, why would I bother?"

    As for old friends - life takes you to different places, that's all. I'm not too bad at keeping in touch, actually, but I've had very good friends who would never reply to my messages - or reply once and that's all - and after a few times and a few years, I stop bothering. I still keep in touch with maybe 3-4 friends from school and uni - message a few times a year, and whenever I'm back in the country, we make an effort to see each other. I stay the weekend or something. But even these ones who are already better at staying in touch - they don't often say a lot in their messages either until you actually see them. Again, a certain amount of Britishness seems to get in the way... :bigmeh:

    I don't honestly think I'd have fitted into British culture if I hadn't been raised there. I would've suited Latin/Spanish/Italian culture far more I think.
     
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  25. Hwaigon
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    Hwaigon Contributing Member Reviewer

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    Though one might easily slip into a family stereotype without friends, I don't think it's a rule or inevitable effect of family. It isn't that you don't have friends, you see them less often...as opposed to all-friends life.
     

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