From the early honeymoon faze, to the ignored red flags, to the realization the relationship you’re in is going to be your undoing, Halsey’s new single “Graveyard” is a deeply personal look at her experiences with toxic and abusive relationships.
The “Bad At Love” singer lives up to her title in this song, the second single of her anticipated third album “Manic,” acknowledging how she made mistakes in staying in bad relationships.
While this song is a bit more pop than her usual songs and best described as a radio single, the lyrics make the song stand out and make it more than the usual meaningless tunes currently on the radio.
The line “I know when you go down all your darkest roads / I would’ve followed all the way to the graveyard” highlights her reflection of just how far she would have let her relationship take her down. Giving her all to a relationship and struggling to come back after intertwining herself with such an unhealthy relationship is a vulnerable aspect of her life that she is choosing to tell her audience about.
This line and another, “Oh, ’cause I keep diggin’ myself down deeper / I won’t stop ’til I get where you are” follows similar themes she expressed in her sophomore album’s song “Devil In Me” with the lyric “But I still let everyone down when I change in size / And I went tumbling down tryna reach your height.” She puts her own self and personality of being a strong woman aside at times during bad relationships and she expresses regret she feels for doing that after being away from the situation.
“Graveyard” is all about doing everything to save a relationship you know deep down is not a good one, which is perfectly represented in the line “I keep running when both my feet hurt / I won’t stop ’til I get where you are.”
This line is also reflective of people in abusive relationships.
According to the National Domestic Violence hotline, “Most female victims of intimate partner violence were previously victimized by the same offender, including 77% of females ages 18 to 24, 76% of females age 25 to 34, and 81% of females ages 35 to 49.”
Halsey describes continuously going back to these relationships even when deep down the pain weighs more on her than she would ever admit while going through the situation.
The grey area of what is love and what isn’t is better experienced and described by the line “Oh, its funny how / The warning signs can feel like they’re butterflies.” Misconstruing abuse and toxicity with infatuation is a blurry line not often talked about.
Halsey toes the line when describing if her relationships have been abusive or just toxic. Even so, lyrics such as “The hand that you hold is a weapon” heavily imply an abusive past.
The presumed final straw of this abusive relationship is seen near the end of the song with the lyrics “You look at me / With eyes so dark, don’t know how you even see / You push right through me / It’s gettin’ real / You lock the door, you’re drunk at the steering wheel / And I can’t conceal.”
You can listen to Halsey’s new song here.