"By The Bed" as written by and Alexander Greenwald....
Her eyes were closed
When I caught her in bed
She seemed much happier then
I sat by her side
And I couldn't help but cry
I was here for a reason and I
Finally understood
And my oh my
Could only ask myself why oh why
Can't we talk this through
And make things right
I'd sure as hell like to try
Right about this time
She opened her eyes
And asked how long I had been there
Well my tongue was tied
I said nothing I just stared
Then she said: "Oh, I didn't think you cared."
And I wasn't ready for what she said next:
"There is nothing else
That you can do
You can't understand
What I go through
And if the world has changed
Well I'll be damned
And I'm no good at being brave
Not even on the better days
And there are things we can not save
Oh no matter how hard we try."
She said:
"There is nothing else
That you can do
You can't understand
What I go through
And if the world has changed
Well, you'll do fine."
I tried, but no I could not stand
I touched her with a trembling hane
I choked and could not say goodbye
Oh no matter how hard I tried


Lyrics submitted by planetearth

"By the Bed" as written by Alexander Greenwald

Lyrics © Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd., MEMORY LANE MUSIC GROUP

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By The Bed song meanings
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9 Comments

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  • 0
    General Commentwhat the hell? no one is responding? this is a great song with great lyrics. personally, i think it's about some guy who's watching a girl die possibly? or maybe she's sick. you know,

    "i choked i could not say goodbye oh no matter how hard i tried"

    "there is nothing else that you can do, no you cant understand what i go through"

    or maybe theyre going through a breakup!
    glazedpooon September 21, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI love this song.
    I thought that it was about a couple breaking up. It's time for them to go their seperate ways but he doesn't want to let her go.
    chelledcon October 14, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis is my favorite song off of its album.

    I thought it could be about either a girl dying or a break up, but i'm leaning more toward the death standpoint, all thought lines like "Why can't we talk this through" seem to say otherwise. Still, it's a powerful song either way you look at it.
    astroboton February 20, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI thought it was about a girl he loved who was dieing as well, but i went to one of their shows and alex said:
    "This is a song for any of those who has ever been cheated on." so if you listen to it again it knowing that he was being cheated on, it makes a more sense. He probably went to her house to find out why she had been avoiding him and when he got there probably saw her in bed with another guy (when i caught her in bed she looked much happier then) and now he knows thats why.
    likelylasson March 19, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentWhen you look at it from the standpoint of him being cheated on, it does make sense. He still wants her and wants to work it out, but she feels she's to weak to make things like they used to be.
    MayaPapayaon June 30, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentActually, at a Phantom Planet show I went to recently, Alex told us this song was about his grandmother who he was very, very close with, who passed away. And that he thought it was funny, because everyone thinks it's one those "i caught my lover cheating" songs. But it's actually about his grandma, haha.
    ravenzoeon July 12, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthe title should give it away that its about a loved one dying. He is sitting 'By The Bed' and this is what they are talking about.
    Homestyle_joeon January 10, 2009   Link
  • 0
    My Interpretationi would say it is about a relationship ending, you dont want it to end, but you know it has to. someone may be fatally ill and you have to say goodbye to them. or someone may have cheated on you and you know it so you have to end it because they are no longer trustworthy to you.
    karmapoliceaftermeon November 19, 2009   Link
  • 0
    My InterpretationIn all honesty, I think this song could easily be about a girl who's attempting suicide. Now I hate to be the morbid one here but parts of the song suggest it, even though I do see the lines that point to someone dying for other reasons lets say or even cheating. Anyways, if you have the time to read this essay, please do because I spent a lot of timing coming up with it. Here we go.

    So, when he says, she seemed much happier then. She's lying in bed with her eyes closed, possibly asleep or just at a relaxing point. If she was suicidal it's possible she'd appear more peaceful when the outside world was tuned out and especially if she was near the point of actually attempting, it'd almost make sense for her to appear at ease if this is what she wanted. It's also suggest she was looking anything but happy lately and if the person telling the story, obviously the singer, was romantically involved with her which is how I take it, he'd maybe have been able to catch on to her apparent sadness.

    The next part, I was there for a reason. He finally saw what was going on, he literally said my oh my, like he's coming to the realization. And then of course, why oh why. So he's almost saying holy shit how did I not put it together. Then his mind goes to the why would she do this, she's got so much good and whatever else I think you get that point. So in this part he's thinking to himself I knew I came here for something and it was because I needed to either see this and understand or possibly save her.

    Can we talk this through, make things right? I see him sitting down next to her and being like lets talk about it, it doesn't have to be this way, let me help you sorta thing. And he'd sure as hell like to try. Obviously he's feeling guilt maybe or just he really cares about her and he wants to do whatever he can to reverse it, to make her not want to take this route. Sure as hell seems pretty powerful in a sense, I think it implies that he really means what he's saying.

    The next part where she's opening her eyes, and asks how long he's been there and he's just staring there with wide eyes. Two possible things here. Either what I said above it kinda like an internal thing, he could think she's already dead and he's going through that, I can fix it, why is she doing this, how could I not see she was unhappy, all those feelings, and now she's opening her eyes and he's like okay you're alive still, and he's in shock because he still knows what her plan is. Or, he's literally just in awe at the way she sounds. I take it she's pretty uninterested at this point, almost cold sounding because in her mind she knows what she wants and this boy coming in here, no matter their relation, isn't going to change her mind. If she's set, she's set. And there's her also saying she didn't think he cared. Either, he made it appear that way and they didn't have the best relationship, also goes along with the guilt he could possibly be feeling. Or she shut herself off so much and had this suicide thought in her head for so long that she was emotionally unavailable and depressed that to her, no one did care.

    Then the whole next part really gets me. I can see this really vividly even, she could be pouring out her last bit of words to him and either she's angry or upset or both even. Her words seem really emotional to me. There's nothing else you can do, meaning she's already made up her mind and anything he says won't change that. You dont understand what I go through, simple really she's saying he doesn't get it, he doesn't know what its like inside her head he can't possible be able to rationalize what she feels so he can't help her. If the world has changed then I'll be dammed, I think that's almost like well if it changes then oh freaken well because it wasn't working for me. I'll be dammed, she's almost surprised as the saying would go so it could mean she'd be shocked if things actually had the possibility to turn around for her.

    Then the last little part of her lets call it a speech, that's what really drove me to this whole suicide meaning.

    Oh, 'cause I'm no good at being brave
    Not even on the better days
    And there are things we cannot save
    No matter how hard we try

    It's really to the point and straight forward for me here. She admits that she's not strong enough to deal with it or handle her life for whatever her reasons or hardships are, she can't do it. Even on the days when she's happy its not enough. From experience, you can be depressed or upset or sad or lonely but you have good days and for her those better days aren't cutting it or they're less frequent. And the last lines, I feel like its her telling him that he cant save her, some things aren't able to be saved. She's convinced herself that this is the only way and no matter what he says or what he tries, she's not savable.

    I see him just hearing her and then getting choked up at the end. He gets what she's saying and I think there's a part of him that can't accept it but he almost knows her doesn't have a choice. I think he's emotional at this point, touching her with her trembling hand. Like I said before I think this song is so emotional and it's possible they'd both be crying at this point for their respective reasons. And then he couldn't say goodbye, he refused at the end to be okay with this no matter how hard he tries to understand her. I think he gets it, but he can't be okay with it. But that's how the song ends and if I had to make my visual ending, I think he'd either just sit there and be with her because he can't do anything so maybe being with her doesn't mean he's saying goodbye until she's really gone. Or he took more drastic measures and called for help, depending on how strong his refusal of acceptance is.

    Sooooo, if you read this whole thing you're my favorite. I'm a very visual person, I see this song being playing out so clearly in my head it's almost weird. But it took me a while to settle on a meaning for this song and based on the lyrics, what I see, and even the tone of the singer's voice throughout it, I just get this conclusion every time I listen to it. I really really love this song, I think its extremely emotional and heartbreaking even. But my interpretation of the meaning is that it's an encounter between a boy who has some sort of strong relationship, my top being either best friend/brother or romanic, and a girl who is in the mist of committing suicide.

    Not saying it's correct, but that's how I see it. Hope my opinion helped!
    neverlandingon June 25, 2014   Link

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