In this week’s episode of the Millennial Meltdown, we’re going to be discussing the “t” word — taxes. That’s right, let’s talk about the thing that public school failed to teach us that could potentially see us imprisoned if done incorrectly.
In honor of upcoming Tax Day, which is May 17 this year, I’d like to talk about what it’s like to try to do taxes as a millennial. Now, my experience has been somewhat simple as I’ve been fortunate enough to use Credit Karma to do my taxes since I was 18.
As I recall, my first thought doing my taxes was, “this shouldn’t take too long.” I won’t even bother explaining the irony in that sentiment. Even with the help of Credit Karma, it took an absurd amount of time to do my taxes.
First, you have to find all of your paperwork. Finding all of the different forms you need to file your taxes is like losing your car keys in a pile of car keys — oh, also, the pile of keys is invisible. Most employers give out your W-2 forms in January (I think that’s like federal law or something). Why on Earth would you give me such an important form that I won’t even use until April?? It’s almost like they want you to have ample time to lose your paperwork (wink, wink).
If you were able to complete your first tax filing without the help of one (or both) of your parents, then congratulations, you’re better than the rest of us.
Probably the second biggest disappoint while doing your taxes for the first time, is realizing just how little money you made after feeling like you busted your hump for the entire year. Don’t worry, the worst is yet to come.
The first biggest disappoint is when you get to the end and realize how much you’re getting on your return.
One of the biggest struggles I STILL have doing my taxes is the part where I have to determine if I am considered “independent.” Like, what does that even really mean? I pay all my own bills, but I still have to call my dad to ask how to open up a savings account. I have a baby, but I definitely don’t see myself as an adult for the simple fact that I’ve eaten cereal for dinner at least twice this week.
In all seriousness, we should’ve learned this in school. Don’t worry though, I still remember the Pythagorean Theorem — a2 + b2 = c2
Guess we can’t change the past. Stay in school, do your homework, and learn how to do your taxes … or at least find someone you can pay to do them.