"A Pain That I'm Used To" as written by and Martin Lee Gore....
I'm not sure what I'm looking for anymore
I just know that I'm harder to console
I don't see who I'm trying to be instead of me
But the key is a question of control

Can you say what you're trying to play anyway
I just pay while you're breaking all the rules
All the signs that I find have been underlined
Devils thrive on the drive that is fueled

[Chorus]
All this running around, well it's getting me down
Just give me a pain that I'm used to
I don't need to believe all the dreams you conceive
You just need to achieve something that rings true

There's a hole in your soul like an animal
With no conscience, repentance, oh no
Close your eyes, pay the price for your paradise
Devils feed on the seeds of the soul

I can't conceal what I feel, what I know is real
No mistaking the faking, I care
With a prayer in the air I will leave it there
On a note full of hope not despair

[Chorus: x2]


Lyrics submitted by theetum, edited by comment114

"A Pain That I'm Used To" as written by Martin Gore

Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

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A Pain That I'm Used To song meanings
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16 Comments

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  • +2
    My InterpretationI think the perspective is of a guy who's been used to rejection, and instead of this girl stringing him along, he's asked her to just reject him and give him a pain that he's used to.
    Arbanalityon May 27, 2013   Link
  • +1
    General CommentAgentOren had the idea going and i just want to drop my interpretation.

    I think its from Gore's perspective. The chorus I think is straight forward. His relationship with his wife was probably tumultuous but I believe it was pain he became comfortable with. The separation drove feelings of hurt to the surface creating a new type of pain that he is not accustomed to.

    There are two well written stanzas here that pretty much details what the song is meant to convey. The second stanza describes the hurtful games and actions done on her part and how he is "paying" for them with feelings of hurt. The signs he now only sees leading up to the divorce are now underlined meaning he acknowledges the mistakes finally. All these past games and signs fueled the devils(animosity and hurt during the separation).

    The other stanza is my favorite. The hole in the soul comment seems to refer to emptiness his ex wife was experiencing and her need to fill it with someone or something else. The price for that self created paradise is him. She is not consciencly seeing it and will not repent most likely for it. The seeds of doubt and fear mostly were on his part which just drove the separation to some kind of melting point.

    The last stanza seems like a closer in which he acknowleges the past deceit or betrayal and he is leaving it to fate not out of sadness but hope for something better whether together or just going back to being civil.

    My favorite song by them easily...
    Butternutzon May 31, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti still haven't sat down to try to understand what this song is all about, i just know it's so great --sounds so deep and has an incredible amount of energy somewhat retained by something that doesn't let him scream louder. i think a great remix could make that thing explode to let all that energy out. great.
    giroon January 12, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Commentdont actually know what the meaning is behind the song but i found myself able to relate to the lyrics, when i reached a point where i was totally lost, confused and without a clue. dont wanna get into it all, but the line "just give me a pain that i'm used to" says it all for me.
    ironman84on January 13, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthis song live. ROCKS!
    moobyjoeon January 26, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI thought it was really straight forward, IronMan84 nailed it on the head exactly.

    It's about feeling lost and it's got that ambiguous edge that it could be in context to a relationship or just society.
    Who's breaking all the rules, is it a partner or some higher power?

    It's incredibly negative in general tho - the hope's gone (no matter what is asserted), they no longer have the will to want it to stop, they'd just be happy for it to be a pain they can deal with.

    Just wish it had a better beat to it - or rather a bigger beat. It's got such power and then this puny little dance drums. Bah... Where are those whacking huge drums that made SOFAD so damned good?
    xdvron February 02, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI'm not sure about hopeless

    I think it's about mindless, to don't think in anything, and the cost to do this

    "Close your eyes, pay the price for your paradise"
    Pogo-The-Clownon February 05, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI think this song also relates to Martin (the songwriter) L. Gore's recent divorce...
    He's been in some kind of "familiar" pain during this relationship, some kind of pain that he got used to. But somehow, this divorce had put him into a new kind of pain, that bad that he prefers the "good old" pain he got used to.

    It could also be from his children's point of view: where their parents where together, things were not good for them... but "all this running around" - moving back and forth between one parent and another, is worse than the (emotional) pain they are used to.

    What do YOU think?
    AgentOrenon March 11, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti just saw depeche mode last night at the arts center. the place went completely black after a long intermission, everyone got silent, and they opened with this song. completely awesome feeling.
    emergeon May 15, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Commenthmm. don't see how it could have to do with marriage or divorce.

    I actually see it as Martin seemingly disappointed by some domme.

    "Can you say what you're trying to play anyway
    I just pay while you're breaking all the rules"
    "I don't need to believe all the dreams you conceive
    You just need to achieve something that rings true"
    "All this running around, well it's getting me down
    Just give me a pain that I'm used to"

    Like the domme is making him be a chore boy or something and trying to do head games, or talking about herself, or something not quite right. And Martin just wants the pain he's used to, telling her she needs to achieve something that rings true.
    MapMistresson July 04, 2008   Link

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