This song is mainly about Individuality. "When I wake up, im afraid, somebody else will take my place" means that Jesse wants to be himself, he does not want anyone to "take his place" or...
When I wake up I’m afraid, somebody else might take my place
When I wake up I’m afraid, somebody else might take my place

Make that money, fake that bunny, ache my tummy
On the fence, all the time
Paint young honey, face so sunny, ain’t that funny
All my friends always lie to me
I know they’re thinking

You’re too mean, I don’t like you, fuck you anyway
You make me wanna scream at the top of my lungs
It hurts but I won’t fight you
You suck anyway
You make me wanna die, right when I

When I wake up I’m afraid, somebody else might take my place
When I wake up I’m afraid, somebody else might take my place
When I wake up I’m afraid, somebody else might take my place
When I wake up I’m afraid, somebody else might end up being me

Keep on dreaming, don’t stop giving, fight those demons
Sell your soul, not your whole self
If they see you when you’re sleeping, make them leave it
And I can’t even see if it’s all there anymore so

You’re too mean, I don’t like you, fuck you anyway
You make me wanna scream at the top of my lungs
It hurts but I won’t fight you
You suck anyway
You make me wanna die, right when I

When I wake up I’m afraid, somebody else might take my place [x3]
When I wake up I’m afraid, somebody else might end up being me

Being me and only me
Feeling scared to breathe
If you leave me then I’ll be afraid of everything
That makes me anxious, gives me patience, calms me down
Lets me face this, let me sleep, and when I wake up
Let me breathe

When I wake up I’m afraid, somebody else might take my place
When I wake up I’m afraid, somebody else might take my place
When I wake up I’m afraid, somebody else might take my place
When I wake up I’m afraid, somebody else might end up being me


Lyrics submitted by koalabri, edited by Ornin, SekhmetKSC

"Afraid" as written by Jeremy Freedman, Zachary Abels, Bryan Sammis, Jesse Rutherford, Mike Margott, Emile Haynie

Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Universal Music Publishing Group

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Afraid song meanings
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21 Comments

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  • +6
    General CommentI agree that this song is about a form of anxiety and/or paranoia. The part that gets me the most is "All my friends always lie to me, I know they're thinking...." This part really kinda explains what it's like to have anxiety. I also think that the chorus "when I wake up..." is about the different people you become through anxiety. Some days you're just a different person, and he's afraid of who he'll be that day.
    higherhopeson November 11, 2013   Link
  • +4
    My InterpretationThe composition of this song is genius and genuine, between the lyrics and the emotion stressed in his voice when he sings. I personally think this song is about relationships and the struggle with identity in general.

    As for the first paragraph:
    "Make that money, fake that bunny, ache my tummy..",

    I almost see this as though he believes one is living a life passively and full of lies. Getting up to go to a dead-end job in the morning, faking sex with a partner (once again, detailed interpretation), mindlessly consuming...

    For the, "All my friends always lie to me, I know they’re thinking...":

    Paranoia consumes his mind and he worries about judgement. You can even hear how the sound slightly washes out as we hear what he thinks others are thinking..."you're too mean, you suck, etc..."

    The most powerful part of the strong where I connect is the chorus. "When I wake up I’m afraid, somebody else might take my place."

    In a relationship, it's about who you're sleeping/together/friends with and not knowing whether that person can just find "another" you. You're replaceable. When it comes to finding out who you are as a person, I think he just doesn't want to lose himself to his negative side and he doesn't want to lose his sense of individuality. There are so many people who come and go on this planet, that it is emotionally and mentally overwhelming. You don't want to become a number.

    The part "Keep on dreaming, don’t stop giving, fight those demons.." speaks for itself really. Demons could mean the thoughts, doubts, and other struggles in life. Sell your soul could just mean free yourself but don't give up who you are.

    "Being me and only me, feeling scared to breathe. If you leave me then I’ll be afraid of everything..."

    Finally it ends with the singer wanting a sigh of relief. He's already scared to be himself and of losing a relationship, and when he wakes up, either next to a person or just being hit with realization, he wants to know he's still there.
    Pier5on December 31, 2013   Link
  • +2
    General CommentOkay, I believe it is about bi polar. With bi polar you have paranoia. Like when you are depressed negative thoughts consume you, so you think that everyone hates you. Which the course. "When I wake up someone might take my place," the rotation of the moods take a turn. With bi polar you can be one person one minute and a completely different person the next. "On the fence, all the time," can mean that he changes moods from side to side. Also I know this from experience when you get in depressive episodes you get clingy to people, not wanting them to leave. With the beginning
    "Make that money, fake that bunny, ache my tummy"
    Sometimes when people are on there manic side gets very sexual. I only think it is bi polar because I have experienced these feelings.
    666BlackStaron January 07, 2014   Link
  • +2
    My Interpretation I'm sure everyone can relate to this song in a slightly different way, however, although I agree it's about anxiety and depression, I also think it may be about drug addiction. As an addict myself, I relate to this song as if he were singing to the drug or drugs he uses to medicate the anxiety and depression. You become afraid of what will happen to you when you wake up and the drugs aren't there. Although you hate the drug, you are a slave to it in order to stay calm, and control your emotions and pain.
    candimarie1986on March 18, 2014   Link
  • +2
    General Commenti think in this song he's talking about himself especially in the music video you see him sitting there naked showing extreme vulnerability but the chorus where he's saying" you're too mean i don't like you fuck you anyways" ect. i think that's him describing how he feels towards himself at times. there are times when we all don't like ourselves saying "when i wake up I'm afraid somebody else might take my place/ end up being me" he's afraid that someone else will end up like him and "keep on dreaming fight those demons" are an internal battle he's having with himself over all afraid is in my opinion is about fearing ones self and the person you are at times yet don't want to be
    rachael97on July 20, 2014   Link
  • +1
    General CommentHey guys, I submitted the lyrics and I just wanted to say I'm not 100% on "fake that bunny" and "don't stop giving" haha so if you guys know/hear something that possibly makes more sense I would love to know your thoughts. Great song btw :3
    koalabrion April 18, 2013   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI think, pretty clearly, it's about paranoia and anxiety, both in and outside of a relationship. Suffering from anxiety/paranoia myself, almost all of these song's lyrics appeal to me.
    fantascinationon August 20, 2013   Link
  • +1
    General CommentMy understanding from the way I use to feel when I was younger going down the lyrics:
    “$$ , Fake Girls after money and fame, anxiety, always teetering on the fence of who you are and what you want and should you allow yourself to be exposed and venerable to the world”
    “young girl painting faces with crap makeup yet their faces are already sunny(young), ain’t that SAD”

    “Anxiety you do not want people copying you or lying because they think that is what want to hear so there is not confrontation because they (your friends are afraid of the confrontation)”
    “Keep your dreams growing and expanding, be yourself and not afraid to be venerable and exposed. Demons it depends on the person in this song it sounds like Anxiety is his demon from being so exposed”
    “Sell your emotions but keep something’s of yourself and do not expose them”
    “If they see your whole dream and ALL your vulnerabilities it might make them leave and never come back because you are still unsure yourself and who you are and what you have to offer the world and rejection sucks and makes you want to die!”
    “You cannot be more then you are the anxiety takes over sometime when you are so exposed and venerable and let your whole self be exposed to the world and then if they walk away it was because they see the real you and do not like what they see so fuck you anyways a defense mechanism”
    LaurentLon December 29, 2013   Link
  • 0
    General CommentAt Firefly Music Festival before playing this song Jesse Rutherford said, "This song is about being a pussy."
    15stepon June 25, 2013   Link
  • 0
    My InterpretationThis song clearly represents depression and anxiety.? It is that universal feeling, when you want to escape a depression and anxiety, but you just can't and just hate that feeling when you know what is outside, which is the first cause for your depression, anxiety anyway.
    nakedpeopleon September 03, 2013   Link

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