When we think about hating someone we still love, it’s romantic love. However, sometimes we have a toxic parent with a complicated relationship. Addiction is sometimes personified, which becomes a love-hate relationship. Regardless, loving someone or something that makes your life impossible is one of the most complex emotions in the human psyche. These are ten songs about loving someone you hate.
10. Insensitive – Jan Arden
All the character wants to do in this song is find a way past loving someone. Throughout the lyrics, you hear a desperate inner pleading to forget all the good times they had and even have a mental dialogue with the person hoping to find closure within the relationship. One of the most telling parts of the song is when the character admonishes herself for believing the lie in the first place.
9. Brick – Ben Folds Five
Brick is one of Ben Folds Five’s more emotional songs. The two people are still in a relationship, but one is drowning the other one. Throughout the lyrics, you get a sense that the song’s narrator hates himself because he truly loves the woman he’s with, but she is entirely toxic for him. Many relationships have elements of love and hate. Often, we become addicted to the feeling of staying with someone who makes us hate who we are in the relationship, but we stay out of a sense of obligation.
8. Take A Bow – Rhianna
Even though a person cheats on you doesn’t mean you don’t stop wanting to be with them. Yet, sometimes you have to stand up for yourself and let them go. The songs’ character is facing her boyfriend, who she hates but still loves. He’s standing outside and wants to apologize. The song’s lyrics convey this situation has happened before because the narrator has had it with apologizes. She also mentions a rerun. Forcing ourselves to hate someone when we want to do the opposite is one of the hardest things to do.
7. Forget You – Ceelo Green
Even though the song’s narrator has some of the worst things to say about the person in this song, it’s obvious they are only angry because they wish she’d come to her senses and love him instead. So even though the lyrics are about someone despising someone who leaves them for someone well off, they are pleading for the other person to take them back by the song’s end.
6. Daughter – Pearl Jam
One of the most complicated relationships is the one we have with our mothers. This song’s character is wanting to please their mother but always feels at a lack. Our parents are one of the people we are meant to love unconditionally, but when they do things that hurt us emotionally, we begin to feel a sense of hate.
5. Love The Way You Lie Part II – Eminem and Rhianna
The original Love the Way you lie was a tremendous success for both Rhianna and Eminem. However, it gives the story a sadder turn. Rihanna’s opening lines speak to the beginning of a relationship when we look at a person and know they will be our everything. Yet, as some relationships progress, we find that we have a self-destructive relationship. The most complex relationships to leave are when you desperately love someone, but you have to force yourself to hate them because they are toxic and taking you down.
4. Drink You Away – Justin Timberlake
One of the classic stereotypes is when we leave people; we try to drink down emotions. Typically, this is because we never wanted to leave in the first place. Justin Timberlake’s smash hit is about a character who tries every form of alcohol to let the person go and can’t do it. Hating someone doesn’t come easily, and even if you try to numb the emotions, you will inevitably fail.
3. Epiphany – Staind
This song is a departure from much of Staind’s angry rock catalog. The song is about inner conflict and wanting to come apart but still find a place in the other person’s heart where they can be again. Hating someone you love doesn’t always translate to another person. Sometimes the person we hate is ourselves because we can’t get rid of emotions for another person even if they are dragging us down. The images of whispers are the faint breaths of a relationship that is dying will never rise again.
2. You Oughtta Know – Alanis Morissette
This song is the quintessential I hate you because I still love you music. One of the things women are notorious for is angry phone calls to their exes because they still love them. This song takes that emotion to epic levels. The character in this song wants the person to remember all the lies they told and hurt more deeply than they realize. However, beyond the bitter hate is a woman who wants all of it back.
1. Hate Me – Blue October
This song has a dual meaning. Justin Furstenfeld struggled with addiction. Part of the song is hating his addiction, and the other part addresses a mother who had the same problems. In the song, he tries to block out all the negativity she has heaped on him for years because he feels like without letting go, he will relapse again. The love and hate in this song are that he thanks his mother for helping him get sober because their relationships with alcohol destroyed their bond. Addiction is a family disease, and many people endure hate relationships with substances because they elate and ruin in equal parts. Yet, when the entire family suffers from addiction issues, it creates an even darker love-hate connection.