blog post Best breakup songs to help you get over your worst breakup Self-love after ruins

10 Best Breakup Songs to help you get over your worst breakup

Have you experienced your worst breakup, yet? Or you’re just in the mood to listen to breakup songs while in quarantine? Hello, everyone. I hope everything is well with you and your loved ones. Today’s blog post is a little biased and personal. Presenting my 10 best breakup songs that will help you get through your worst breakup. 

Honestly, you can enjoy listening to these songs even if you haven’t experienced anything similar to a breakup. 

Ready for the irony?

A study conducted byTaruffi & Koelsch (2014) showed that listening to sad music is not depressing at all. In fact, the most frequent emotion evoked was nostalgia, which is a bittersweet emotion — it’s more complex and it’s partly positive,” Taruffi said. “This helps explain why sad music is appealing and pleasurable for people.”

Moreover, the study covers the paradox of “Real” and music-evoked sadness. The study also states that…

…music-evoked sadness is often not immediately linked to a sad extra-musical event, thus allowing the listener to take pleasure in so-called negative emotions. This component of music-evoked sadness (the lack of “real-life” implications) differentiates our experience of music-evoked sadness from “everyday” sadness. Taruffi & Koelsch (2014)

So without further adieu, let’s jump right into this list of best breakup songs that will help you get over your worst breakup (or not).

Read more: 50 When-life-gets-hard quotes: words to help you get through tough times

10 Best Breakup Songs that will help get over your worst breakup

1. Come Pick Me Up (Ryan Adams)

Controversies aside, I discovered Ryan Adams through a mixed tape (in CD form) from my college professor. The song was The Rescue Blues. I was even thrilled to find out that he married Mandy Moore. 

Again, controversies aside, look at how beautiful these lines are 

When you’re walking downtown

Do you wish I was there

Do you wish it was me

With the windows clear

And the mannequins eyes

Do they all look like mine

2. Untouchable Face (Ani Difranco)

I discovered Ani Difranco on Spotify (wuvwuv) and fell in love with her music as well as her advocacies on cultural and political organizations supporting causes including abortion rights and LGBT visibility.   

Look at how bitter and angry these lyrics are. 

Tell you the truth I prefer the worst of you

Too bad you had to have a better half

She’s not really my type

But I think you two are forever

And I hate to say it, but you’re perfect together

3. I Want You (Fiona Apple and Elvis Costello)

Fiona Apple did a brilliant cover version of the song. But the original is just as haunting and bittersweet. 

I want you

The truth can’t hurt you it’s just like the dark

It scares you witless

But in time you see things clear and stark

4. Missing (Everything But The Girl)

This song is from their album Amplified Heart, which is my favorite. 

I step off the train

I’m walking down your street again

And past your door, but you don’t live there anymore

It’s years since you’ve been there

Now you’ve disappeared somewhere, like outer space

You’ve found some better place

5. Somebody That I Used to Know (Gotye feat. Kimbra)

It’s impossible not to include this on our best breakup songs list. A lot of people say Gotye is a one-hit-wonder. I don’t mind at all. This is song is going to be on everyone’s best breakup songs playlist whether you like it or not. It’s timeless. It will remind you so much of how old you’ve become. 

But you didn’t have to cut me off

Make out like it never happened and that we were nothing

And I don’t even need your love

But you treat me like a stranger and that feels so rough

No, you didn’t have to stoop so low

Have your friends collect your records and then change your number

I guess that I don’t need that though

Now you’re just somebody that I used to know

6. Pile Up (She Keeps Bees)

What is worst than the worst breakup?  Returning gifts. Yeah, this song just reminded us of how awkward that is.  

I wanna recount all the gifts I gave

I wanna recount all the gifts you gave

Take ‘em to a field and pile em up we’re gonna see which one is bigger, bigger than the other

7. I can’t make you love me (Bonnie Raitt, cover by Bon Iver)

The original version by Bonnie Raitt is just as heartbreaking as this cover. But what made it stand out is the piano arrangement. 

‘Cause I can’t make you love me if you don’t

You can’t make your heart feel something it won’t

Here in the dark, in these final hours

I will lay down my heart and I’ll feel the power

But you won’t, no you won’t

8. Say It To Me Now (Glen Hansard)

If you haven’t seen the movie Once, bookmark this blog post, come back later, and watch it STAT. The movie is not your typical Hollywood cliche. It’s about music, unrequited love, and believing in yourself. 

Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova were brilliant in this movie. No wonder they won the Oscars for Best Original Song. Say it to me now is one of the songs featured in the movie. 

‘Cause this is what you’ve waited for

A chance to even up the score

And as these shadows fall on me now

I will somehow, 

9. Tears Dry on Their Own (Amy Winehouse)

Amy Winehouse made me revisit jazz music. Such great talent. I miss her terribly. 

All I can ever be to you is a darkness that we knew

And this regret I got accustomed to

Once it was so right

When we were at our height

Waiting for you in the hotel at night

I knew I hadn’t met my match

But every moment we could snatch

I don’t know why I got so attached

It’s my responsibility

You don’t owe nothing to me

But to walk away, I have no capacity

10. New York (St. Vincent)

This song was released by Annie Clark a.k.a St. Vincent in 2017 on her fifth studio album Masseduction. She even released piano versions of the album tracks, a more mellow vibe compared to her previous albums. For me, this is her best studio album to date.   

I have lost a hero

I have lost a friend

But for you, darling

I’d do it all again

Bonus songs:

Dancing on My Own (Robyn)

If you are a 90’s kid, it’s hard to miss Robyn. She is a Swedish singer-songwriter, DJ, and producer. I’m sure you came across her 1997 hit song Show Me Love. Dancing on my own is a more mature take on a love that disappeared. I love how Robyn has grown over the years. It definitely shows in her music.

So far away, but still so near

The lights come up, the music dies

But you don’t see me standing here

I just came, to say goodbye

After You’ve Gone (Turner Layton, cover Fiona Apple)

After You’ve Gone is a 1918 classic by Marion Harris. This song has a lot of nice covers including the onces by Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald, and Hugh Laurie. But this one by Fiona Apple is my favorite. 

There’ll come a time

Now don’t forget it

There’ll come a time

When you’ll regret it


When you grow lonely

Your heat will break like mine

And you’ll want me only

After you’ve gone

After you’ve gone away

There you have it. My 10 best breakup songs that will help you get over your worst breakup. 

Which one is your favorite? 

What else did I miss? 

Let me know in the comments.

10 Best Breakup Songs  that will help get over your worst breakup Self-love after ruins
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