'Say Something' became a breakout hit after Christina Aguilera performed it on The Voice. ...
Say something, I'm giving up on you
I'll be the one, if you want me to
Anywhere, I would've followed you
Say something, I'm giving up on you

And I am feeling so small
It was over my head
I know nothing at all

And I will stumble and fall
I'm still learning to love
Just starting to crawl

Say something, I'm giving up on you
I'm sorry that I couldn't get to you
Anywhere, I would've followed you
Say something, I'm giving up on you

And I will swallow my pride
You're the one that I love
And I'm saying goodbye

Say something, I'm giving up on you
And I'm sorry that I couldn't get to you
And anywhere, I would have followed you
Oh-oh-oh-oh say something, I'm giving up on you

Say something, I'm giving up on you
Say something


Lyrics submitted by ColdIvory, edited by squidwyatt, Awsomeniss9595, LornaRadke

"Say Something" as written by Ian Axel, Mike Campbell, Chad Vaccarino

Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, ST MUSIC LLC.

Lyrics powered by LyricFind

Say Something song meanings
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189 Comments

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  • +62
    General CommentFor me, this song is about two people that are in a relationship. For the one singing, he is really in love with whoever he is with. It's the kind of love that, to him, would have been forever. He tries so hard, constantly giving his love to this person. He has finally given his complete heart and soul, all invested in this person, but the other person hasn't even given him half of that. He would go to the ends of the earth with or for this person, but he would not receive the same treatment. Eventually, it's too much. Giving everything you have to someone and receiving very little in return has consumed his thoughts, so he just wants something. Just for the other person to say something, maybe that they really do love him and can't live without him or just a simple "please don't go, I need you." For the whole song, he's waiting, drawing it out just to give them more chances. Finally, he knows that he will never be as loved as he loves this person, so he swallows his pride, swallows that gut feeling that he's doing something wrong and should turn back, and instead says goodbye. Once a fighter, he has now admitted defeat, he has now given up on this person.
    Me&You_Tonighton October 24, 2013   Link
  • +20
    General CommentI fully agree with artistdujour's comment that a well-written song can be related to on a million different levels.

    I think this song is actually about letting go of an unfulfilling relationship. Recognizing the longing to make something happen/work, and settling with the fact that it won't. But it could be any party speaking to any party. In my dark moments I imagine that the innocence and beauty of life is speaking directly to me through this song.
    polyreson November 30, 2013   Link
  • +15
    General CommentI think of this song meaning in 2 different ways.

    The first one could be a friend/family member who is about to pass away. You've done everything you can to keep them here, with you, and it's just gotten worse. You've lost all hope. It's been so long and such a hard battle, your starting to "give up" on them. You're to the point where you are begging them to "say something", to give them a sign that they are still here, and with you... even though you know they aren't.

    Another way, could be about love. You are trying harder than you should in a relationship, and you aren't sure if you even want this. You don't have a sign wether you should actually try or just give up. You wan't them to "say something" to know if it will work out or not. You feel obligated to stay because you've tried so long and hard to fit their needs, and they just aren't satisfied (I'm sorry I couldn't get to you".
    avaegrtsnon November 13, 2013   Link
  • +10
    General CommentThis song makes me so sad. I can completely relate to it. For the past year in a half I have been dating someone who I was friends with for nearly seven years. He moved to another country and I have been the one who would travel there every month to see him. I always did everything I could to make his life more comfortable. Gave 100% of me and did everything he liked with him but the favor was hardly ever returned. Loving a selfish person is hard but I tried my best. I even let him know many times that I would be willing to move there and give up my family, friends and life for him.

    "Anywhere, I would've followed you." - I really would have gone anywhere for him.

    I daydreamed about having a family and future with him but he never talked about those things with me. It was so hard, he lived so far away and I would have had to give up so much to be with him but that didn't bother me at all. That was just how much I loved him but I was so frustrated that he never talked about a future with me. He wanted me to move in with him, but without a commitment. I just don't understand how he could have had this type of expectation and feel right about even asking me this without a commitment.

    "I'll be the one, if you want me to." - I broke up with him. I told him to take as much time as he needs. When he's ready, he can let me know and if i am still single then we can take things from there. Hard to believe but he asked me if I could try not to date other people while he thinks about us. Is that crazy? How could I have loved someone so much who is this type of person? Was I really that blinded by love?

    I do know that he cares about me a lot but I can't settle for a mediocre relationship. I read this quote once and it has been stuck in my head:

    "Unless it's mad, passionate, extraordinary love, it's a waste of your time. There are too many mediocre things in life. Love shouldn't be one of them."

    "And I am feeling so small. It was over my head. I know nothing at all." This really hurts. Yes, I was way over my head. What was I thinking?
    "And I'm sorry that I couldn't get to you. And anywhere, I would have followed you." - Too bad things didn't work out. I really would have followed him anywhere.

    "Say something, I'm giving up on you." - I broke up with him, I give up. I gave him my best. He took me for granted and it was time I put myself first.

    Just a couple days ago I met someone pretty amazing in my city. It's crazy. It was like I made a wish and this amazing wish came true. This new guy is drop dead gorgeous, better looking than George Clooney, highly successful, the perfect gentleman and has all the qualities I like in a person. I made a list of all the qualities I wanted in a partner. It's crazy. Everything on my list, this guy has it. All of it! The last guy did not even meet a quarter of the qualities I wanted in a person. I finally see now that I was stupid to have been so blinded before.

    Love yourself first. Don't let anyone take you for granted. They don't deserve you if they do not treat you how you treat them.
    leloann76on November 17, 2013   Link
  • +10
    General CommentThis song takes on so many possibilities. It is like a personal song written solely for whomever is listening.

    As this song pertains to my life.

    I was engaged to the love of my life, she is expecting my first son. About 3 months into the pregnancy she shut down, and stopped loving - stopped trying. We have since grown very far apart. We see each other only at baby appointments. Each time I see her I fall in Love with her again..

    Everyone has told me to let her go, and I have tried everything I can to possible move on. I can't stop..It hurts so bad. I have been supportive, patient, giving, and most importantly I never stopped loving her. Time moves so slowly these days. My heart aches every single minute of the day. There is nothing I can do to escape it.

    I sent her this song via Youtube today 12/16. I think it is fitting that she hasn't said anything. This song captures my struggles. Loving someone purely and unconditionally. Time after time she causes me pain with her inactions/silence.
    Jhart97on December 16, 2013   Link
  • +5
    General CommentI know songs can be interpreted differently according to the listener's perspective, but this song just speaks to me in a way that is profound.

    It's like they crawled inside my head and my heart and wrote down everything I am feeling. After being married to a man struggling with addiction and depression and trying everything I can to help I am ready to walk out the door. It kills me that I can't help him, that he refuses help, refuses me and my love. I can't try like this anymore, I can't make this better for him, or for me. I am giving up on him, but if he just said one thing to give me hope I'd stay. I feel like this is exactly what is going on in this song. I love this man so much, but it's time to walk away.
    librarygirlon November 12, 2013   Link
  • +5
    My Interpretation"Say something, I'm giving up on you"
    To me, he just wants a reaction from the other person.

    "I'll be the one, if you want me to"
    He'll be the bad guy if that's what it takes.

    "Anywhere, I would've followed you"
    He loves her so much he would of done anything for her.

    "Say something, I'm giving up on you"
    He says this line a second time for emphasis. It seems like

    she just doesn't care anymore.

    "And I am feeling so small"
    This could mean that his heart is broken, and it's only a

    small piece of what it once was. It could also mean he's

    feeling insignificant now that it's over. She was his

    everything, and now that she's gone, he's left with nothing.

    "It was over my head, I know nothing at all"
    He reflects on just how dumb it was to give his heart to her.

    Maybe he regrets loving her. Looking back, he tried

    everything to keep it going and look where it got him...

    "And I will stumble and fall
    I'm still learning to love
    Just starting to crawl"
    Babies don't walk on their first try. Likewise, it's unlikely

    that the person you truely and dearly love will feel the same

    way about you the first time. He never got love down because

    he's still missing the other part - her part - of being loved

    back. He's got a lot of life lessons to learn, and just like

    crawling, he's only begun to scratch the surface of what life

    has waiting for him.

    "Say something, I'm giving up on you
    I'm sorry that I couldn't get to you
    Anywhere, I would've followed you
    Say something, I'm giving up on you"
    Same lines repeated but, now he reveals that he wished he

    could have made her feel the same way so that he could avoid

    giving up on her.

    "And I will swallow my pride
    You're the one that I love
    And I'm saying goodbye"
    This explains it clearly and to the point. He's throwing in

    the towel. He's revealing his true feelings to her and laying

    it all on the line. He's trying to make the situation real to

    her, maybe she thinks it's a game, but he definitely means

    it.

    "Say something, I'm giving up on you
    And I'm sorry that I couldn't get to you
    And anywhere, I would have followed you
    Oh-oh-oh-oh say something, I'm giving up on you"
    Same as before.

    "Say something, I'm giving up on you
    Say something..."
    This all comes back to the line "I'll be the one, if you want

    me to" for me. Maybe she hates him for letting her go and

    she's ignoring everything. She doesn't want to hear anything

    and she's shutting him out. He just wants comfirmation or

    something that shows she acknowledges the situation. If she

    doesn't say anything, he'll truly be left with nothing. It

    also might show that he's still stuck in the vicious cycle of

    being afraid of letting go of the one thing he really loves

    and wanting to hold on to it because maybe, maaaaaaaybe she

    might let out her true feelings and the dream he's been

    living in can finally become a reality.

    Some of what I said above may not resonate with everyone, but

    it does for me because it describes the situation I'm in

    perfectly. I've loved her for years. It's hard knowing that

    all the time you spent and all the feelings you had for

    someone you really REALLY love could be for nothing. It's

    scary to think about letting them go because it's all you

    knew. I'm afraid. I just wish this would all work out...
    morgan1124on December 21, 2013   Link
  • +5
    My InterpretationI think that the singer has fallen desperately in love with a girl, and he gave her everything. He showed her his past, feelings, etc. He's not experienced in love, hence the line "I'm still learning to love / just starting to crawl." But it isn't enough for the one he loves, there's nothing left he can do then let her go, unless she says something to him that will stop him from giving up.
    marsbarson January 21, 2014   Link
  • +4
    General Comment
    Here's what the band said....

    Ian Axel: For both of us, I want to say it's about really letting go. It's growing up. I feel like we lost a bit of our innocence. It was about realizing what we're worth, really loving ourselves, and understanding that to love someone else or be loved by someone else it requires loving yourself. We were both heartbroken in two different scenarios. I was stubborn and scared to let go for many reasons. That's a universal thing.

    Chad Vaccarino: The process of writing this was one of gaining an awareness of this relationship. It was sort of built up in my head in terms of what I thought I could be. I'm letting go of that idea. I'm gaining a big understanding of what was going on at that moment. We can get stuck in our heads so easily. That song was me getting out of my head.

    Ian Axel: It was such a profound writing experience. It felt like church, even though I've never been to church [Laughs]. We were so deeply wounded at the time. We were feeling all of these things. Part of me died and came back to life. It was a really sacred experience. We write songs because we need to. We grow and learn together from them. Our friendship has developed over the years through writing. Chad spoke of a greater awareness. I feel like that has continued to come through writing. We can step outside of our lives and look at them.


    Read more at artistdirect.com/nad/news/article/…
    CatLiddleon November 08, 2013   Link
  • +3
    My InterpretationThe genius of a truly well-written song is that it lends itself to many levels of meaning, and all those levels can co-exist. (Think "Hallelujah" by Cohen.) While this song certainly seems to suggest a human relationship about to end, on a deeper level it reminded me of the emotional struggle of someone walking away from a traditional perception of God...not knowing where such a path would lead. The empty, small feeling of unanswered prayers and waning faith would say all these same words. (For those of you who might find that too dark, let me add that such a moment is often a necessary part of a journey to a deeper kind of spirituality--or for others, the start of seeing the world in a more compassionate, pragmatic way.)
    artistdujouron November 28, 2013   Link

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