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Oh, I can't take another heartache,
Though you say you're my friend, I'm at my wits' end!
You say you're love is bona fide,
But that don't coincide with the things that you do
And when I ask you to be nice, you say

You've gotta be
Cruel to be kind in the right measure,
Cruel to be kind it's a very good sign,
Cruel to be kind means that I love you,
Baby, you've gotta be cruel to be kind.

Well I do my best to understand dear,
But you still mystify, and I want to know why.
I pick myself up off the ground
To have you knock me back down again and again!
And when I ask you to explain, you say

You've gotta be
Cruel to be kind in the right measure,
Cruel to be kind it's a very good sign,
Cruel to be kind means that I love you,
Baby, you've gotta be cruel to be kind.

Well I do my best to understand dear,
But you still mystify, and I want to know why.
I pick myself up off the ground
To have you knock me back down again and again!
And when I ask you to explain, you say

You've gotta be
Cruel to be kind in the right measure,
Cruel to be kind it's a very good sign,
Cruel to be kind means that I love you,
Baby, you've gotta be cruel to be kind...



Lyrics taken from http://www.lyricsmode.com/lyrics/n/nick_lowe/cruel_to_be_kind.html

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songmeanings

  • u
    +1
    UnregisteredJul 2, 2012 at 4:01 pm
    It's flat-out abuse. The woman is being flippant about her abusive behavior to him. She's saying: "this is me. This is how i am. Love it or leave it, i'm fine with my behavior, you should be, too. "
    I hate this song. It's great music, nice harmonies and catchy lyrics put the title phrase into one's head - but no resolution to the abuse it represents leaves an abuser who's listening thinking the behavior is common, acceptable and even quotable if confronted.
    I was here today in hopes of finding a final verse condemning it's apparent theme so i could get it out of my head. (it's catchy. ) i'm very disappointed -- in the lyrics & song, not the site.
    I like the site very much; i'll be back.
  • u
    +1
    UnregisteredApr 15, 2012 at 12:50 am
    Basically, a woman is telling a man (nick lowe) that she has to be cruel to him in order to love him.
  • u
    -0
    UnregisteredFeb 10, 2014 at 7:28 pm
    My girlfriend once said while she was thinking about leaving me, she said "You've got to be cruel to be kind." and now that I know It's a song and the lyrics. It gives me chills. I am so sorry ashleigh for everything I've ever done. This song is near and dear to me.
  • u
    -0
    UnregisteredJul 25, 2012 at 10:00 pm
    If the relationship is not working , it is better to break it off then keeping on being nice and pretending nothing is wrong.

    It could also mean the guy is into or likes being physically or verbally abused by a woman so her cruelty is kindness in disguise b/c he is getting off on it or he was abused by his mom growing up and that is what is familiar. She is giving him what he wants or expects.

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