6 Songs for Both Sides of the Unrequited Love Equation

Lyssa lay on the floor, broken. Only this time, it wasn’t her body that was bloodied. It was her heart. And this time Adam wasn’t there to soothe her wounds. Although arguably innocent, he held the blade that sliced into her soul. And no amount of begging could stop the bleeding.

If you asked Adam about their breakup, he would say his heart was broken, too. He just wanted to keep it from fracturing any further. His life with an increasingly mercurial Lyssa had spun out, beyond his grasp. It was leave or end up doing something he’d regret.

Raise your hand if any of this resonates.

Yep. If you have a heart, it’s probably been broken before. That’s most likely why songs about unrequited love outsell those about happily ever after. Great art, like great growth, comes from pain. They’re axioms.

Songs for the Broken Hearted Left Behind

Bonnie Raitt’s I Can’t Make You Love Me If You Don’t is a primer guide to what succumbing to unrequited love feels like. You could listen to the music without the words and still feel the emptiness in the chords coming from the piano keys.

Sam Smith’s Not in that Way is another that starkly lays out unrequited love pain. His voice paints pain as artfully as Monet illustrates a day in the park.

How could we discuss unrequited love songs without Taylor? Teardrops on My Guitar is a classic song from a classic breakup songstress.

Songs for the Guilt-Ridden Heartbreakers

Apologize, by Timbaland, tells it from the other side. Adam could probably relate to this person who’s tried everything but just can’t.

And…Slow Dancing in a Burning Room by yes, John Mayer, Top 10 Hollywood heartbreaker. But don’t judge the song by the singer. Just listen to the words. If you’re the one walking out, this one may resonate.

Lest this post appears sexist, let’s give a shout out to Carole King and It’s Too Late. This song’s been helping the walkers feel better since 1971.

Breaking up sucks. But it’s universal. So is music. Thank God we have it.

Do you have a song that got you through a bad breakup? Share it in the comments section.

In case you were wondering who Lyssa and Adam are…they’re the main characters in my novel.

Published by Missy Kavanaugh-Carryer

Missy Kavanaugh-Carryer is a content writer and author of two children's books and a board book series for young children. She's currently working on her first novel.

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