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21 Songs I Relate to When Everything Feels Wrong

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I’ve been diagnosed with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and depression, and in those moments when I’m starting to feel down, wanting to hurt myself or end my life, my OCD repeats awful images in my head and comments on how horrible I am — that I’m human waste, unworthy and disgusting.

So I really want to share the songs that understand me — the songs I feel when I’m having a bad moment, whether it can escalate quickly or just end in a tick. They’re a little bit mixed with romantic stuff, but I hope some of this helps you in any way.

1) “Little Talks” by Of Monsters and Men

“And some days I can’t even trust myself …”

“There’s an old voice in my head / That’s holding me back …”

“Some days I don’t know if I am wrong or right.”

“Your mind is playing tricks on you my dear.”

2) “Under Pressure” by Queen

All these lyrics describe how I feel every day, but some important ones are:

“Pressure pushing down on me / Pressing down on you no man ask for …”

“It’s the terror of knowing / What this world is about …”

“Chippin’ around, kick my brains ‘round the floor / These are the days — it never rains but it pours …”

“Insanity laughs under pressure we’re breaking …”

3) “I’m So Tired” by The Beatles

“I’m so tired, I haven’t slept a wink / I’m so tired, my mind is on the blink …”

“You’d say I’m putting you on / But it’s no joke, it’s doing me harm / You know I can’t sleep, I can’t stop my brain / You know it’s three weeks, I’m going insane …”

“I’d give you everything I’ve got, for a little peace of mind …”

4) “Shake It Out” by Florence and the Machine

This song is so special and spatial; it can hurt and it can heal.

“Regrets collect like old friends / Here to relive your darkest moments / I can see no way, I can see no way …”

“And I’ve been a fool and I’ve been blind / I can never leave the past behind …”

“And I’m damned if I do and I’m damned if I don’t …”

“And I’m ready to suffer and I’m ready to hope …”

5) “Help!” by The Beatles

John Lennon later said that this was written in dark times of his life and it was a literal cry for help.

“I never needed anybody’s help in any way / But now these days are gone, I’m not so self-assured …”

“Help me if you can, I’m feeling down / And I do appreciate you being round / Help me, get my feet back on the ground / won’t you please, please help me …”

“And now my life has changed in oh so many ways / My independence seems to vanish in the haze / But every now and then I feel so insecure …”

6) “SOS” by ABBA

“Where are those happy days, they seem so hard to find …”

“You made me feel alive, but something died I fear / I really tried to make it out, I wish I understood …”

7) “The Winner Takes It All” by ABBA

“The winner takes it all, the loser’s standing small / Beside the victory, that’s her destiny …”

“The winner takes it all, the loser has to fall / It’s simple and it’s plain, why should I complain?”

“Seeing me so tense, no self-confidence / But you see / The winner takes it all …”

8) “Lover of the Light” by Mumford & Sons

There’ll be no value in the strength of walls that I have grown / There’ll be no comfort in the shade of the shadows thrown …”

“I know I tried, I was not stable / Flawed by pride, I miss my sanguine eyes …”

9) “Little Lion Man” by Mumford & Sons

“Weep for yourself, my man, / you’ll never be what is in your heart …”

“Wasted on fixing all the problems that you made in your own head / But it was not your fault but mine, and it was your heart on the line …”

“Tremble little lion man / you’ll never settle any of your scores / Your grace is wasted in your face, / Your boldness stands alone among the wreck …”

“I really fucked it up this time / Didn’t I, my dear?”

10) “Kangaroo Court” by Capital Cities

“That I’ve been doomed to lose my mind tonight / Too weak to fight …”

“The judge pulls me aside says c’est la vie / Let your darker side come out to feed …”

“I commit the crime of wasting time …”

11) “Turning Tables” by Adele

“I can’t keep up with your turning tables / Under your thumb, I can’t breathe / So I won’t let you close enough to hurt me / No, I won’t ask you, you to just desert me …”

“Next time I’ll be braver, / I’ll be my own savior, / Standing on my own two feet …”

12) “Fix You” by Coldplay


“When you try your best but you don’t succeed / When you get what you want but not what you need / When you feel so tired but you can’t sleep / Stuck in reverse …”

“When you lose something you can’t replace …”

13) “Some Nights” by Fun.

“Some nights, I stay up cashing in my bad luck / Some nights, I call it a draw …”

“Oh Lord, I’m still not sure, what I stand for / What do I stand for? What do I stand for? / Most nights, I don’t know anymore …”

“I try twice as hard and I’m half as liked, but here they come again to jack my style …”

“So this is it? I sold my soul for this? Washed my hands of that for this?”

14) “Carry On Wayward Son” by Kansas

“Lay your weary head to rest, don’t you cry no more”

“Though my eyes could see, I still was a blind man / Though my mind could think, I still was a mad man / I hear the voices when I’m dreaming …”

“Masquerading as a man with a reason / My charade is the event of the season / And if I claim to be a wise man, it surely means that I don’t know …”

“Don’t you cry no more, no!”

15) “Everybody Hurts” by R.E.M.

“When your day is long / And the night / The night is yours alone / When you’re sure you’ve had enough / Of this life / Well hang on / Don’t let yourself go / ‘Cause everybody cries …”

“Sometimes everything is wrong …”

“Everybody hurts, don’t throw your hand …”

“If you’re on your own / In this life / The days and nights are long …”

16) “I Dreamed a Dream” by Les Misérables

“And the world was a song / And the song was exciting / There was a time / Then it all went wrong …”

“When hope was high and life worth living …”

“Then I was young and unafraid / And dreams were made and used and wasted …”

“As they tear your hope apart / As they turn your dream to shame …”

“But there are dreams that cannot be / And there are storms we cannot weather …”

“I had a dream my life would be / So different from this hell I’m living / So different now from what it seemed / Now life has killed the dream / I dreamed …”

17) “Yesterday” by The Beatles

“Yesterday all my troubles seemed so far away / Now it looks as though they’re here to stay …”

“Suddenly, I’m not half the man I used to be / There’s a shadow hanging over me …”

“Now I need a place to hide away / Oh, I believe in yesterday …”

18) “Eleanor Rigby” by The Beatles

“Lives in a dream …”

“All the lonely people / Where do they all come from? / All the lonely people, where do they all belong?”

19) “I’m Only Sleeping” by The Beatles

“When I wake up early in the morning / Lift my head, I’m still yawning …”

“Everybody seems to think I’m lazy / I don’t mind, I think they’re crazy …”

“Please, don’t spoil my day, I’m miles away / And after all I’m only sleeping …”

“Please, don’t wake me, no, don’t shake me / Leave me where I am, I’m only sleeping …”

20) “Lover’s Eyes” by Mumford & Sons

“This mirror holds my eyes too bright / But I can’t see the others other in my life …”

“But do not ask the price I pay / I must live with my quiet rage / Tame the ghosts in my head / That run wild and wish me dead / Should you shake my ash to the wind / Lord forget all of my sins …”

“I walk slow / I walk slow / Take my hand help me on my way …”

21) “Below My Feet” by Mumford & Sons

“And now I sleep / Sleep the hours and that I can’t weep / When all I knew was steeped in blackened holes / I was lost …”

“Let me learn from where I have been …”

“When I was told by Jesus all was well / So all must be well …”

If you or someone you know needs help, visit our suicide prevention resources page.

If you need support right now, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255, the Trevor Project at 1-866-488-7386 or text “START” to 741-741. Head here for a list of crisis centers around the world.

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Thinkstock photo via arvitalya

Originally published: May 27, 2017
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