Smart Lyrics about Breakups

Without music I think I’d literally go insane. It’s nice to know that some people have been able to turn feeling shitty about love into very relatable art forms. Something I hope to do one day, but am incapable of at the moment.

Anyway, here are songs that I have grown to love because of the lyrics and how perfectly the represent certain parts of feeling lonely after my latest break-up, that I’m finding particularly hard to move on from.

1. Tegan and Sara – Goodbye, Goodbye


You let me try
Knowing there was nothing I could do to change you
You coulda warned me
Knowing there was nothing I could do to change you

You never really knew me, never ever
Never ever saw me
Saw me like they did

You never really loved me, never really
Never really loved me
Loved me like they did


The lyrics I chose were taken from the bridge and B chorus of the song. Sara explains in a track-by-track somewhere that this song is not meant to be an angry break-up song. I believe her. It’s more just sort of saying bye to someone who probably should have known better than to get into something they weren’t ready for, and being sad that they couldn’t see you how you wanted them to.

2. Foxes – Body Talk


Gotta rise
Gotta fight
Cause it’s something I wanted
Oh, he’s got to go
I can see in the light
It’s not right
Now I know
I don’t need him


I loved this song after listening to the lyrics. It feels like it’s about being unapologetic about what you want from a relationship and realising that the person you thought could fulfil your needs in the light of day, can’t – but that doesn’t necessarily make it easier to accept. The emotional progression in the song also echoes emotional patterns you usually feel when trying to get over someone – “Days like these / I just want you back” to “Days like these / I don’t want you back” to the bridge “Days like these / I can’t even speak”

Although slightly melancholy overall, the song more hopeful than sad, but doesn’t dismiss sadness either.

3. Carly Rae Jepsen – Boy Problems


Finally gotta let it go
She said to me on the phone
So tired of hearin’ all your boy problems
It could be the perfect day
You’ll just make it rain anyway
So tired of hearin’ all your boy problems

What’s worse?
Losing a lover or losing your best friend
What’s worse
Is when you discover you’re not good for each other



The whole song is basically a middle finger to those really milking the tragedy~ of a lost love. I like the think I’m on the verge of my friends giving me a spoken word version of this song. The lyric ‘It could be the perfect day / You’ll just make it rain anyway’ was pretty poignant. I’m definitely currently in a mood where it is literally the middle of a gorgeous London summer and I’m convincing myself my life has never been worse.


4. HAIM – Days Are Gone


I remember when you found it hard to give
But I gave it all, I gave you my all
You only took one side
When all my hopes ran dry
Those dreams are gone, gone all along


I always liked this song as it was one of the more vulnerable songs on the album – this particular verse represents to me the realisation you have when you stop blaming yourself for things that went wrong when dating someone – you sort of realise it’s not just all the mistakes you made, but also somewhat, if not largely, the failings of the other person. The rest of the song is also very good.

5. Lana Del Rey – Damn You 


I pray your life is sweet, you fucker
Damn you


This song is definitely on my ‘on the verge’ playlist when I want to feel very sorry for myself. Even though it’s unreleased it’s one of my favourite Lana songs. The lyrics are nostalgic and helpless, even though it’s over and she hates the guy she still can’t really bring herself to say anything harsher than Damn You, until she has to try wish him well in a life that doesn’t feature her. It’s good, okay?


Perhaps surprisingly this list didn’t feature as many helpless songs and lyrics as I thought it would. Which makes me feel good, and maybe like progress is being made.


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