Breakups can be hard, and they can be liberating. One common theme: Breakup songs.

Breakup songs. They remind us that relationships ending are a part of life. And the songs we turn to after a split can vary just as much as the breakups themselves. Some breakups can be a release from hell. And have you yelling from the mountain tops, “free at last, thank god almighty I’m free at last”.

Others can feel like a complete loss of a life you thought you were going to have with your partner. And that can leave a deep void in a person. In fact, according to, “many people feel disappointment, grief, and a sense of failure when a relationship ends.”

Different Breakups Need Different Breakup Songs

Like most people, I’ve relied on all kinds of breakup songs to get through different relationships ending. And I’ve needed different types of songs for different types of splits. I had the ones where it was a gift. Because I was dying to get out from underneath the smothering, monst…I mean…because I was unhappy and feeling like we had been growing apart for some time.

I wanted do the dirty deed myself but I wasn’t quite brave enough. But then one day, while at work, I got the call.

“I don’t love you anymore”

Me, trying to contain my excitement, replied “You don’t? Oh Damn. …Can you hold on a sec?” Then I put the phone down and gathered myself. “X-Treme radio X 1075 it’s Carlota and I just was given the gift of freedom! Here’s the latest from Pearl Jam.”

Related: Deftones Songs Are Easily The Sexiest Alt Metal Music Ever

Then there’s the times I needed the other kind of breakup songs. For the truly toxic relationships. The ones that exposed me to more verbal abuse than I took while selling solar, door-to-door (dude, unemployment is brutal). Hell, children’s TV didn’t even screw me up as much as one of my breakups from this kind of relationship.

That breakup crushed me. The end was so painful that it changed my whole outlook on relationships and the need for them. My world became blacker than my wardrobe. And that saying: “the best way to get over someone is to get under someone” meant absolutely nothing to me. Although, full disclosure, I tried it out anyways.

Breakup Songs: A Healthier Alternative To Committing Crimes

No matter if you are the trigger puller or the one gets shot, the pain is real. The need for healing after a breakup is essential. And breakup songs are a healthy alternative to whatever dramatic, dangerous, or dark coping skill our brains might be trying to convince us to do. According to, breakup songs help us affirm and validate our feelings. They help us feel one with others. Basically, they tell us, we are not alone.

Here are the five break up songs that helped me get through the tough times, regardless of what side of the proverbial gun, I was on.

  • #5 - Scorpions "Still Loving You"

    Look, I may have never truly pined for someone while listening to this song, unless you count my third grade boyfriend. Who dumped me for some chick named Sarah just because her mom made better peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. But as far as breakups go, this one is as epic as it gets. The most powerful rock ballad ever. And the hint of a German accent is far too fun not to sing along with.

  • #4 - Alanis Morrissette "You Oughta Know"

    Truth be told, I hated this song when it first came out. Of course, having to play it every three hours for years helped curate my disgust for it. However, years later, and a seriously toxic relationship later, this song resonates with a very important emotion. The “are you f—— kidding me? You cheated on me with that??? You insane narcissistic f—— liar” emotion. Which is one I had never truly experienced before, but now I understand all too well.

  • #3 - Linkin Park "One Step Closer"

    This breakup song was my anthem after I pulled the trigger on a relationship that made me feel like I was losing my mind. The passive aggressiveness alone was about to put me in the looney bin. Even though that’s where she belonged. That’s what I get for dating a stripper.

  • #2 - Kool and The Gang "Celebration"

    Believe me, this song was on my playlist a few times. It’s the ultimate song for feeling like yourself again. It’s a song that gets you ready to enjoy the good things in life. It’s also a song about freeing yourself from the negative things in your life, including your former not so significant other.

  • #1 - Slipknot "Snuff"

    As much as those songs encompass flavors of different breakups, this song takes anger, despair and love and then wraps it up into the perfect break up song. And for people who didn’t know Slipknot had the chops for a ballad, well here ya go. This song is always on my playlist, and when I need a good dose of healing after a bad run in the love category, I can count on this song to let me know I’m not alone.

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