For some cosmic reason, my children did not inherit the math gene. You see, back in the dinosaur ages when my husband and I went to university, we both studied lots of numbers; he graduated with degrees in economics and law, while I graduated with degrees in math and business. Because I was such a glutton for punishment, I followed up with a Chartered Accountant designation as well. But of course in those days EVERYTHING was so much easier than today, so my children assure me. 😉
The Demon Child and The Obnoxious One do love money, and especially what they can buy with it. They know what their weekly/monthly budget is, and if I’m a day late or a dollar under, they know that too. They’re comfortable with percentages, (as in sales) interest and even compound interest. But, anything to do with formulas, shapes and exponents causes their eyes to bulge and cross, their tongues to hang out and their hair to stand on end. Really, I swear!
Last week the night before the Grade 11 math test, my daughter cracked open her notes for the first time.
“Mom, I need your help with math. NOW!!!”
“I’m busy getting dinner ready darling. Ask your dad.”
“NO, I want you.”
We went back and forth for several minutes before my husband knocked on her bedroom door. “I can help you with your math right now.”
“NO. Only mom can help me. You suck at math.” – this is so not true but the Demon Child is not known for her veracity, but rather her creativity and dramatic nature
“Mom’s busy. It’s me or you fail your test. If you fail your test, and fail math this year, you won’t get into your preferred university. You’ll have to live at home and go to…”
“FxxxK off Dad! Go away!”
“FxxxK Off!” and she slamed her door shut.
The next morning while driving the delightful Demon Child to school, I asked her why she was SO angry with her dad when he was only trying to help.
“He was rude to me and mean.”
“What? You’re the one that swore at him?!”
“But he shouldn’t have threatened me and bullied me”
“So he’s supposed to beg you so you will allow him to help you?” Besides he was just pointing out the obvious. I looked her straight in the eye.
“Well, he has to be nicer to me.” she tried to pout but there were unmistakable signs of chagrin lurking at the corners of her mouth as I rolled my eyes.
So we were right and she was wrong; we all knew this. For once, though, we let it go. Yes, we did not engage, so we did not have a HUGE battle. We figured it was her loss at the end of the day.
If she wants or needs help, she’s going to have to figure out how to get it…appropriately.
Hopefully she will learn next time.
Hopefully we’ll be able to stay detached next time.