"Difficulty" as written by and Katie Tunstall....
Isn't much more I can do for you
Isn't much more that I can try
Twisting myself into shapes
To stop you crying
What'll I do if I lose you
What'll I do if I lose
Difficulty is coming my way
Coming my way

Making my way into places
Only been seen on your darkest days
Breaking my heart to take a walk
Into your jungle
What can I do in this world for you
If difficulty is my friend
Keeping me company when I know
I don't need it
I don't need it
Oh, oh, oh

[Chorus]
You change every day
You change every day
(What can I do to make you notice)
You change every day
You change every day
(A little more time to bring you home)
You change every day
You change every day
How can I tell you the truth
When I don't want to

Possible days in my future
Possible ways into my past
Sewing it up nice and tightly
So I don't wonder

What if I did so much more for you
And what if I'd said so much more
Difficulty would be a stranger
A stranger to me

[Chorus]

Oh, yeah, oh, yeah, oh, yeah
I'm governed by difficulty
Oh, yeah, oh, yeah, oh, yeah
I'm governed by difficulty
Oh, yeah, oh, yeah, oh,oh, oh,
Oh, oh, oh

[Chorus]

When I don't want to
When I don't want to
When I don't want to
When I don't want to
When I don't want to


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"Difficulty" as written by Kt Tunstall Katie Tunstall

Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

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Difficulty song meanings
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5 Comments

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  • +2
    General CommentAs for the meaning of this song, I've had this feeling in a LOT of friendships--I think anyone who's experienced relationship difficulties, or more to the point, who's seen a friend through a hard time, has felt this way. It's hard because you want to help them out, but you can't do more for them than what's in your power. The rest is left to them, if not to the circumstances they're living through.

    The "you change every day" could mean a lot of different things-if you don't know the person well, say if they've never let you in in some way (told about their past, etc.) then it can be hard to reach out to them. You feel as though you're breaking your back supporting and encouraging them, when really you don't know what's going on with them. It seems from your perspective that, as they deal with their circumstances, they go through shifts and changes in who they are. It's hard to get a read on someone if they keep themselves closed off from you. "How could i ask you to choose" would make sense here, because you can't call them out on their changing behavior, or advise them on how to handle their troubles, when you don't understand them enough to speak to them with any kind of authority.

    "You change every day" comes off to me as throwing this song back to "Heal Over." It's telling someone that who they are now isn't who they'll always be. Again, the person is enduring tough times in their life, and KT is saying that they’ll move past it someday–they won’t always be going through the same way. However, this is more of a sister song than a reiteration of the same sentiment. Rather than saying the same things as Heal Over did, Difficulty is from KT’s perspective. She’s opening up about her perspective as the shoulder that the friend is leaning on. This song illustrates the duality that arises when you involve yourself in another’s issues. It’s hard because you can never truly know where to draw the line. What more can be said, or done? You can’t just fix the problem for them, but you can’t leave them in the lurch. So, after dealing with a person over some period of time, maybe for a variety of issues as you live your lives, you have to realize that you’re not all-powerful, no matter how well-intentioned you are. There’s a kind of peace and self-possession in admitting that you lack this power, and acting on that realization means to drop the issue of how much you can do.

    Okay, this is post is rambly. My apologies. Basically, she’s poured some amount of effort into a hurting friend, but is now stating that she can’t do everything for that friend. In the end, it’s just not KT’s battle to fight.
    jazzy06792on May 19, 2011   Link
  • +2
    My InterpretationFor me, this is about the same friend that "Another Place to Fall" is about. She did change every day, I was never sure how she was going to treat me from one day to the next. We'd be really close and then it was like we didn't know each other. It was really a toxic relationship.
    But. I loved her. Really I did. And I was in denial for a long time about how bad a friendship it was. I always heard "I'm governed by difficulty" as "I'm loving my difficulty" because that's how it was.
    taylorofthephunkon August 01, 2012   Link
  • +2
    My InterpretationI think this song is about the same man 'Funnyman' is about. He's a friend of hers who is schizophrenic, and 'changes every day'. KT has to 'twist herself into shapes' (put forth great effort) to stop his crying (psychotic breakdowns) and has to lose feeling to understand and put herself in his paranoid, scary place of voices and demons. (breaking my heart to take a walk into your jungle) The difficulty of his being this way follows her everywhere to the point where she's nearly on the brink of insanity, and can't tell him the truth because it would be too painful.
    ariesrule1on May 27, 2013   Link
  • 0
    General Commentawesome song!
    i thought the lyrics were "how could i ask you to choose?, when i don't want to"
    i could be wrong though
    salaamon November 17, 2010   Link
  • 0
    My InterpretationFor me, this is about the same friend that "Another Place to Fall" is about. She did change every day, I was never sure how she was going to treat me from one day to the next. We'd be really close and then it was like we didn't know each other. It was really a toxic relationship.
    But. I loved her. Really I did. And I was in denial for a long time about how bad a friendship it was. I always heard "I'm governed by difficulty" as "I'm loving my difficulty" because that's how it was.
    taylorofthephunkon August 01, 2012   Link

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