Math homework never fails to make me cry.

That's pathetic, I know, but I'm not even kidding.

I remember quite vividly sitting at my kitchen table as my dad tried to teach me the concept of "solving for x," something my 7th grade math teacher couldn't quite get through my head. (I'd like to take a moment to point out that my 7th grade math class was one of the biggest factors in me asking to be home schooled. I hated it.)

Dad: "Ok Sadie, so if you subtract three from this side, what do you have to do to the other side?"

Me: "..."

Dad: "See the equal sign in the middle? That means we have to keep it equal. So...?"

Me: "..."

Dad: *cue dawning frustration* "You have to subtract 3"

Me: "But there never was a 3 on the other side. How can we subtract what never existed?"

Dad: "Cause it has to be equal."

*crickets*

Me: "So then what is X?"

Dad: "That's what we're solving for."

Me: "But it's a letter."

Dad: "A letter in place of a number."

Me: "So X is always the same number?"

... you get the point. I

*always*ended up in tears and I*always*left feeling like an idiot. Luckily home school led to a one-on-one tutor which made math doable, but I never fully understood it. Sure, I can memorize SOHCAHTOA, but explain why it works that way? Forget it.
Somehow I managed to pull a high enough score on the math portion of the ACT to get me out of my math generals here at BYU. Unfortunately, it is virtually impossible to pick a major that includes no math. In my case I'm stuck with Family Finance and Stats.

As I sit here studying for my Finance midterm I feel exactly like my 12 year old self, trying so hard to grasp the concept of X. I want so badly to understand. I keep re-reading the textbook, searching for the explanations I know must be there, but eventually I start punching random numbers into my calculator until I come up with a number listed in the multiple choice options.

They subtracted $4000 and then divided by 1-.75? Right. Where did those numbers come from exactly?

Just to make you feel sorry for me, here is one of my questions:

"If a taxable investment had a yield of 12.5% and a tax-free investment had a yield of 9.2%, and you were in the 25% marginal tax bracket, which investment would produce the highest after-tax return for you? Secondly, what would be the taxable equivalent yield of the tax-free investment of 9.2%?"

I know, right? Now you feel a little like crying as well?

Currently all of my energy is focused on continuing trying to understand instead of blinding taking the test and accepting the fact that I will never get it.

I hate math.

The answer to your tax question is: Hire a tax professional to do your taxes. Put THAT on your midterm! (Or not, seeing as how in the last math class I took, "math for the health care professional," each wrong answer equaled the death of a patient. No pressure. I killed a LOT of people that semester. A lot...)

ReplyDeleteI'm that way with science.... I think I scored a 19 on the ACT in the science section, and I got a 60% on the physical science final. I just... suck at it, and it personally offends me every time.

ReplyDeleteLucky for you and me, writing is WAY more important, right?

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