1. “Christmas Lights” by Coldplay
Heartbreaking lyric: “Those Christmas lights light up the street / Maybe they’ll bring her back to me / Then all my troubles will be gone / Oh Christmas lights, keep shining on”
This song narrates a fight between two lovers that takes place on Christmas night, with one walking out and the other reeling in regret. What a way to celebrate.
2. “Christmases When You Were Mine” by Taylor Swift
Heartbreaking lyric: “I know this shouldn’t be a lonely time / But there were Christmases when you were mine”
Country-era Tay-Tay recalls a lover she used to spend blissful Christmases with, and how the first one without him understandably blows in comparison.
3. “River” by Angus Stone
Heartbreaking lyric: “I made my baby cry / I made her say goodbye”
In his cover of this Joni Mitchell classic from 1971, the Australian folk singer painfully captures the remorse of someone who had pushed a lover away right before Christmas. Perfect timing, brah.
4. “Winter Song” by Sara Bareilles and Ingrid Michaelson
Heartbreaking lyric: “December never felt so wrong / ‘Cause you’re not where you belong /Inside my arms”
This gloomy, hauntingly lovely duet by the female singer-songwriters expresses sorrow at a lover’s departure, yet still rings with hope for his return.
5. “I’ll Be Home for Christmas” by Lady Antebellum
Heartbreaking lyric: “I’ll be home for Christmas / If only in my dreams”
While Bing Crosby’s 1943 original was written from the POV of a soldier overseas during World War II who hoped to spend the holidays with his family, the song is perfect as a Christmas anthem for LDR couples, too. Listen out for the boy-girl harmonies in the Lady Antebellum version—they will absolutely slay your fragile little heart.
6. “Merry Christmas Darling” by Christina Perri
Heartbreaking lyric: “I’ve just one wish / On this Christmas Eve / I wish I were with you”
Christina Perri’s cover of The Carpenters’ bittersweet ode to a lover who’s away during the holidays is a tad more cheerful than “I’ll Be Home for Christmas,” but it tugs at those pesky heartstrings just as much.
7. “Home for Christmas” by Maria Mena
Heartbreaking lyric: “And so it is a part of my courageous plan to leave / With a broken heart tucked away under my sleeve”
The Norwegian pop star sings about leaving a relationship that isn’t working anymore, and coming home to nurse her wounds with her family instead, surrounded by the people who truly *love* her.
8. “Wintersong” by Sarah McLachlan
Heartbreaking lyric: “And this is how I see you / In the snow on Christmas morning / Love and happiness surround you”
Sarah McLachlan’s mother succumbed to cancer right before Christmas, and she lovingly remembers her in this heart-wrenching song. Anyone who has lost a loved one—whether to death or to distance—is bound to feel all the feelings.
9. “Miss You Most (At Christmas Time)” by Mariah Carey
Heartbreaking lyric: “I miss you most at Christmas time / And I can’t get you, get you off my mind”
This song is a mournful admission of missing an ex during the holidays while everyone else seems perfectly happy. Naturally, it sounds nothing like that other Mariah Carey holiday song, “All I Want for Christmas Is You.”
10. “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” by Sam Smith
Heartbreaking lyric: “Have yourself a merry little Christmas / Let your heart be light / From now on, your troubles will be out of sight”
Don’t be fooled by the word “merry” in the title—this Judy Garland tune from the 1944 film Meet Me in St. Louis is far from cheery (read its back story here). Enter hugot king Sam Smith, who just had to make his version even more depressing. This song is perfect for anyone who, for whatever reason, is just really down in the dumps this season. Iiyak mo na lang ‘yan.
Follow Cheekie on Twitter.