Country music has always been synonymous with heartbreak. What bigger break to face than that of a marriage? When we’re faced with some of life’s biggest challenges and pains, we turn to music. Breakup songs are often thought of as the most relatable type of tune, but if you’re surviving a divorce, a typical breakup song might not do the trick. Here’s a look at some of country music’s most poignant divorce songs to help you through any personal pain you may face.
1. Tammy Wynette // “D-I-V-O-R-C-E”
One of the most unique songs in country music “D-I-V-O-R-C-E” looks at the breakup of a family through the perspective of keeping the couple’s child unaware, thus the title. Tammy, who lived through several divorces herself, sings with conviction as she laments the narrator’s decision and the toll it is taking on little J-O-E.
2. Phil Vassar // “Rose Bouquet”
No matter the circumstances that brought on a divorce, there were still good times that brought those two people together. Phil Vassar remembers those times in this lesser known single. He expresses regret for the way that two people treated one another during their relationship, and stating quite beautifully that they threw their love away like “your rose bouquet.”
3. Mark Chesnutt // “Goin’ Through the Big D”
This may be the happiest song about divorce that you can find. The lyrics are pretty depressing, “I got the Jeep, she got the palace,” but the tune is upbeat and so very reminiscent of the sound of the 1990s. This isn’t a song for sitting around with a glass of wine and reliving all the mistakes of your ex, but maybe one for a few years after and the wounds have healed.
4. Tim McGraw // “Angry All the Time”
Sometimes divorce is better than unhappiness. Tim McGraw sang this Bruce Robison-penned tune (with Faith Hill on background vocals) that explores the perspective of a lover who would rather leave their spouse than watch them become bitter and hateful.
5. George Strait // “Give it Way”
This is another upbeat look at letting someone go, penned by Jamey Johnson. Couple’s fight, but you know it’s done when one partner decides he or she would rather give everything away than fight any longer.
6. Mary Chapin Carpenter // “He Thinks He’ll Keep Her”
Sometimes people build a life together over decades and then, for whatever reason, they cannot go on. Mary Chapin recounts two people’s lives together, raising three kids and living a normal life, until one day they don’t.
7. Lee Ann Womack // “He Oughta Know That By Now”
After years of being in a relationship partners are expected to know what the other is thinking. You know each other’s schedule, favorite dishes and insecurities. Lee Ann Womack discusses what happens when promised changes never are realized.
8. Reba McEntire // “The Day She Got Divorced”
Getting a divorce is a traumatic event, but in reality it’s the same as any other day. Brandy Clark wrote (and later recorded) a look at the minutia that still goes on while a marriage is falling apart. “It didn’t feel any different than it ever had …”
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