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Top 5 Breakup Songs

February 2, 2011

It has been one week and three days since Tom and I broke up. And to be sure, during this time I have many times felt like starting my car and giving my tail pipe a hummer.

What I have not been doing, however, is listening to sad, sappy songs that would make tail pipe fellatio a certainty.

When I was 16, my first love dumped me after three months. I was heartbroken and thought it best to rub my own nose in it by playing schmaltzy love songs over and over again on my sweet cassette deck.

I sat in my room listening to some kind of Boyz II Men or Celine Dion rubbish and blubber, drool, lament and moan for a month straight.

Until one day I channeled Cher, who hit me in the boob and yelled, “Snap out of it!”

And I did.

“What in shit’s name are you doing, girl?” Cher said. “You have a choice. Why do you choose to make yourself sad? Hoooooo!”

This woman is so smart! I was making myself feel miserable on purpose by listening to these heart-wrenching songs. I realized how self-defeating this behavior was and vowed never again.

Now, after a breakup, I don’t look at old photos. I don’t read old texts. And I don’t listen to maudlin songs that are just going to make me depressed and miss him even more. Instead, I now listen to music that makes me feel happy, confident and empowered.

Some people say you need a grieving period in which you wallow in your snot, play songs of heartache and cry your eyes out until you can’t cry anymore. But I’m not a masochist. Screw that noise.

These are the songs I’m grooving to now.

1. Smile by Lily Allen

Lily Allen’s “Alright, Still” album is the best to listen to following a breakup. (Except Littlest Things. DO NOT listen to Littlest Things unless you care to slit your wrists.)  “Smile” is biting, bitter and sweet all at the same time. (“Not Big” is also brilliant, but unfortunately does not apply to Anaconda Tom.)

Best lyric: “At first when I see you cry… well, it makes me smile.”

2. Break Stuff by Limp Bizkit

Yes! Yes! The ultimate thrasher rock fuck-you-stupid-piece-of-shit song! Raaaaaaaa!

Best lyric: “I’m like a chainsaw… I’ll skin your ass raw… And if my day keeps going this way I just might break your fucking face tonight!”

3. Moving on Up by M People

Sing it, sista. You fucked up, I don’t need you, I’m moving on to something better. Plus, you know how I dig disco.

Best lyric: “I’ve had enough of me, baby, being part of you.”

4. Someday by Mariah Carey

Because you know they always come back. And when he does, you can just say, “Fuck your fucking face, Uncle Fucka.” (By the way, get a load of pre-skank Mariah.)

Best lyric: “Someday, ooh, someday, the one you gave away will be the only one you’re wishing for.”

5. Double Dutch Bus by Frankie Smith

I chose this simply because it makes me happy. It’s impossible to be sad while listening to this song. My fave part is at :22 when he says “chug-a-chug.” And how effing RAD is this guy? Denny’s got competition.

Best lyric: “I got bad feet, my corns hurt; to top it off, I’m late for work.”

And now is the time for you to share. Because sharing is caring. What do you listen to after a breakup to make yourself feel better?

63 Comments leave one →
  1. bonbonchihuahuas permalink
    February 27, 2012 6:14 pm

    This is fabulous! Great list. Married now, but still great music to listen to when you’re mad at the one you love!
    Litter Box Trained Chihuahua Puppies  

  2. February 13, 2012 3:52 pm


  3. moi permalink
    December 17, 2011 3:45 pm

    yaaay pre skank mariah

    i dont get how straightening your hair ,losing the choir and wearing less clothes resulted in her losing her voice?

    seriously .. i need to know. also whitney needs to get her shit together as well

  4. fuckhim permalink
    December 9, 2011 10:28 pm

    thanks for the pick me up!!!!!!

  5. kat permalink
    November 8, 2011 1:57 am

    My boyfriend of 3 yrs cheated on me…came back…knocked me up…cheated on me again…so I got some sweet revenge, but now hes off with some 18 yr old moron (hes 23). I just wish he’d get what he deserves. I should b over him by now….i’m angry.

  6. October 12, 2011 5:00 pm

    Here are 2 songs I played nonstop when I was going through my divorce:

    “Fuck U” Lily Allen
    “The Whole World Revolves Around Me” Little Jackie

    Love them!

  7. Ashleigh permalink
    October 3, 2011 5:29 am

    Thank you so much for this amazing read. I have been listening to all the wrong songs this is exactly what i need! thank you x
    Ps: you have a great talent here!

  8. September 11, 2011 8:13 am

    love it!

    I’ve been chanelling Adele and gosh her beautiful voice can bring even the strongest to tears.

    But I think i need to rock out of this and hit some happy notes :)


  9. Lil permalink
    August 26, 2011 9:28 am

    So need to download or buy Halestorm’s self titled album. Any girl going through any sort of breakup, regardless of the circumstances will LOVE the entire album!!!!!!!!!

  10. July 24, 2011 11:44 am

    Thanks for this! I needed it – Lily Allen, I needed to see that video to REALLY appreciate it.

  11. June 4, 2011 9:07 pm

    I love the song Fighter. It is so fitting for my marriage that just ended. My husband was a cheater. I left him with a scrapbook I made him titled “Why Your Wife is Now an X”. It had copies of all the evidence that I collected over the last two years. Receipts, Facebook posts to other women, pictures etc…All along he told me I was delusional, little did he know he was not getting away with shit.

    • Chels permalink
      June 15, 2011 8:52 am

      That is the ultimate slap in the face! Good job (: He deserved it!

    • moi permalink
      December 17, 2011 3:48 pm

      you should have emailed to his family so they know not ask what happened

  12. April 1, 2011 5:11 pm

    When my marriage was ending, Maroon 5′s Songs About Jane was on repeat play, over and over and over and over again. The whole CD. Can’t listen to it now.

  13. February 19, 2011 12:12 pm

    Just a few others that pump me up, since I am late to the game on this one:

    “You Had Me” by Joss Stone
    “A Little Time” by The Beautiful South

  14. February 12, 2011 8:42 am

    I think my current fave is “My Love is Better” by Annie.

    Best Lyrics:

    My love is better
    Than your love
    My heart is better
    Than your heart
    My moves are better
    Than your moves
    My shoes smell better
    And I bet bet bet bet
    My kiss is wetter
    Than your kiss
    My lips are better
    Than your tricks
    You know you’ll never
    Have these hips
    I’m so much better
    So eat this!

  15. February 9, 2011 2:01 pm

    Holding my own by the Darkness!

  16. February 8, 2011 5:54 pm

    Lily Allen is the bomb! Other great songs–

    Florence and the Machine “Dog Days”
    Natasha Bedingfield “Strip Me”
    Amy Winehouse “Valerie”
    Pink “F*ckin Perfect”
    VV Brown “Shark in the Water”
    Cee Lo Green “Forget You”

    And others. Any pump up song or song that reminds me how awesome *I* am. Because I am awesome. And maybe the guy was too. But clearly we were not awesome for each other.

  17. February 8, 2011 9:03 am

    I go through a sappy period where I listen to John Mayer and Alicia Keys type stuff, then I snap out of it and listen to Disturbed and Sevendust (HARD CORE stuff). I like chanelling my inner rage through those type songs :)

    • February 8, 2011 10:17 pm

      I suppose as long as you don’t wallow too long! I wallow enough on my own without the sad songs. I do admit I’ve been reading some old texts, though. Sigh.

  18. February 8, 2011 8:20 am

    i’m all about the non sappy song train.

    except the masochist in me sort of wants to wallow.

    sorry to hear about your breakup girl. but, uh, i wasn’t convinced he was your prince. not even close.

    • February 8, 2011 10:13 pm

      I know, you’ve been saying it all along, Blunty. But ya know, that pesky love thing always gets in the way. Fuckin’ bitch.

  19. February 7, 2011 12:34 pm

    Guirls, I’m surprised nobody’s mentioned this:
    Kelis – Caught Out There – That song scares me.

  20. February 6, 2011 12:14 pm

    A timely post for me. I have been avoiding all music, as everything seems to link to him in some way.

    Alanis Morissette “Jagged Little Pill” is always good for letting out the anger though.

    • February 7, 2011 7:19 pm

      It’s funny how fresh out of a breakup, everything reminds you of that person. That was a good album, wasn’t it?

  21. February 4, 2011 9:19 pm

    Fly like a G-6:

    • February 4, 2011 9:20 pm

      It’s cooler when a hyperlink goes right to the video, but you can figure it out.

      • February 5, 2011 1:43 pm

        I’d be afraid to dance next to him in the club with that jacket on. I waited till the end to find out why those chicks were looking at Plenty of Fish in the club but I suppose that shall forever remain a mystery.

  22. February 4, 2011 11:35 am

    Pink’s So What helped me through my last break up. :)

  23. February 4, 2011 9:29 am

    Two things….

    1. Love Stinks – J. Geils Band

    2. I was a big fan of pre skank Mariah…

  24. February 3, 2011 12:50 pm

    We might have to stage and intervention for the limp bizkit.

    First step admit you have a problem.

    Repeat… “I am a buttrockaholic” ;-)

    stay strong, let yourself heal.

    • February 3, 2011 10:56 pm

      Ha, actually that’s the only Limp Bizkit song I know. But I reeeeeeally like it.

      And thanks, I’m getting there. :)

  25. February 3, 2011 10:52 am

    Oh oh I wanna play!

    “Ain’t No Use” ~ Bob Dylan
    “It’s A Disaster” ~ OK GO!
    “Hung Up” ~ Madonna
    “Bite Hard” ~ Franz Ferdinand
    “Burn It All Down” ~ VHS or Beta

    …. so many more…

  26. February 2, 2011 8:45 pm

    I love your 4 and 5. I haven’t heard “Someday” in like 15 years or so. **Blushes**

    Let’s see mine are:

    1) “Love Bites” – Def Leppard
    2) “Hollow Life” – Korn
    3) “Superwoman” – Karyn White
    4) “The Break Up Song” – Greg Kihn Band
    5) “Just One of Them Thangs” – Keith Sweat

    Great post! :)

    • February 3, 2011 10:54 pm

      Isn’t it funny how normal Mariah used to seem? Why don’t I know any of those songs?

  27. February 2, 2011 7:45 pm

    The ultimate break up song currently has got to be Cee Lo Green’s “Fuck You”. And it’s great to bop to as well!

  28. Ellen permalink
    February 2, 2011 4:35 pm

    “She’s Leaving Me Because She Really Wants To” by Lyle Lovett ––672746

    “Breakup School” by Bill Parsons – (disclamer: Bill is an old friend of mine!)–7400946

    ANYTHING by Clutch, because it’s loud and I can shout-sing along with the lyrics which vents my frustrations

    Keep on keepin’ on, girl. I know it stinks now, but you made the right decision.

    By the way, LOVE the Terrence & Philip Uncle Fucker shout out. I love the South Park movie so much, I’m almost embarrassed by it.

    • February 3, 2011 10:51 pm

      Whoa, a Lyle Lovett shout out! Haven’t heard his name in a while. For some reason I couldn’t play those.

      I LOVE South Park the movie. Not the series so much. Well, the first two seasons. But the movie… brilliant!

      Thanks, girl.

  29. February 2, 2011 4:16 pm

    I Believe In You by Leann Rimes (the you is yourself).

  30. barrymcw permalink
    February 2, 2011 1:17 pm

    “this year”

    About a lot more than breaking up but it kicks major ass.

    • February 3, 2011 10:47 pm

      I dig it. “I am gonna make it through this year if it kills me.” Great line.

  31. February 2, 2011 12:07 pm

    I looove how snarky Lily Allen is. For me breakup songs must must MUST be angry. I like to listen to Eminem and then punch my pillow.

    • February 3, 2011 10:43 am

      Ohhh me too. Love me some Lilly.

      • February 3, 2011 10:44 pm

        Yessss. Lily is the BEST.

        “Alright, how would it make you feel if I said you never made me come?
        In the year and a half that we spent together, yeah, I never really had much fun.”

        She is awesome.

  32. February 2, 2011 11:56 am

    Glad to hear that you’re taking it like a woman and thinking about fellatio. That bit always makes my heart smile. Just don’t do it to a tail pipe, crack pipe or any other type of pipe.

    Save that energy for your next encounter and jump his bones like a woman possessed, I can’t listen to your songs at work right now but I will pump them up when I get home.

    You’re doin’ great girlfriend, keep positive and things will turn around for you, they always do.

    • February 3, 2011 10:40 pm

      Thank you, love. I appreciate the pep talk. I’m not sure how I’ll break it to my crack pipe, however…

  33. February 2, 2011 11:14 am

    Great post! I went through a break-up last fall and one song I listened to a lot was “Quicksand” by Natalie Walker/Thievery Corporation. The song is kind-of slow, but the chorus is awesome:

    “I will rise from all my sorrow, let the sun shine on my face.
    Alone in comfort, it’s my solitude I will embrace.”

    Of course now, if I were going through a break-up, I would have Katy Perry’s Firework on repeat and full blast.

    “Baby you’re a firework, come on show ‘em what you’re worth!”

    • February 3, 2011 10:38 pm

      Those sound awesome – very positive, yay me kinda stuff. I LOVE Thievery Corporation.

  34. February 2, 2011 11:02 am

    Great post…

    Songs I like during a break up…

    Bobby Womack – If you think your lonely now
    Justin Timberlake – Cry me a river
    Usher – Burn
    Lil’ Wayne – Comfortable
    John Mayer – Perfectly Lonely

    • February 3, 2011 10:37 pm

      Those sound kinda sad. But I don’t actually know any of them except the JT song. Thanks for sharing!

  35. February 2, 2011 10:48 am

    Sorry to hear about you and Tom. I love ‘Smile’ by Lily Allen. Great break-up song. My first break-up I listened to ‘You Oughtta Know’ by Alanis over and over again. Ahhh…good times.

    • February 3, 2011 10:35 pm

      Thanks – I figured someone would mention You Oughtta Know. That is a great song, especially the scratching fingernails on the back part.


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