Playlist: Instead Of Texting Your Ex, Listen To These Songs

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Look, we’re not here to judge. Let those among us who have not been tempted to text an ex cast the first stone, blah blah blah. It happens. Maybe you’re at a place where you’re no longer tempted to reach out to a former lover with the casual yet loaded “hey” text. Good for you! No really, that’s great. Maybe you’ve come up with a handy system to remind yourself it’s almost never a good idea, like adding a bunch of trash can emojis next to their name or deleting their number altogether. Also great! Maybe someone out there is working on an app that is able to materialize a goddess to throw lightning bolts at you every time you consider texting an ex. Someone please invest in this genius idea.

In any case, there’s no better distraction than music to keep your heart and hands from sending a message you might regret. There are certain artists one should avoid when the risk of texting an ex is high: Taylor Swift, Drake, Adele, Kelly Clarkson—to name a few. But the songs below will have you thinking about how down-right amazing you are, pushing aside any and all thoughts of the person you’re considering texting in the middle of the night (don’t do it).

Don’t Text Your Ex

Control – Janet Jackson
Rockstar 101 – Rihanna ft. Slash
Yellow Flicker Beat – Lorde
Gun – Chvrches
Now, Now – St. Vincent
Killa – Tune-Yards
Really Don’t Care – Demi Lovato
Don’t Wanna Be Your Girl – Wet
Can’t Hold Us Down – Christina Aguilera ft. Lil Kim
Stronger – Britney Spears
U + Ur Hand – Pink
Me, Myself, and I – Beyoncé
Take A Bow – Rihanna

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Kayla Kumari Upadhyaya

Kayla Kumari Upadhyaya is the managing editor of Autostraddle and a lesbian writer of essays, short stories, and pop culture criticism living in Orlando. She is the assistant managing editor of TriQuarterly, and her short stories appear or are forthcoming in McSweeney's Quarterly Concern, Joyland, Catapult, The Offing, and more. Some of her pop culture writing can be found at The A.V. Club, Vulture, The Cut, and others. You can follow her on Twitter or Instagram and learn more about her work on her website.

Kayla has written 837 articles for us.


  1. Wet’s “don’t wanna be your girl” has been my jam lately. thanks for this list. :)

  2. Kayla you don’t know how much I need this! I was trying to make a similar playlist last night..but still managed to maybe cry a bit.

  3. I love listening to Julia Nunes “Something Bad.”
    Cuz shes like “I really wanna look at your pics and I really want to miss you, and its bad for me, and I know that.” And then I can say to myself “dont do something bad to yourself!!!”

  4. I would also suggest the following:

    “Happy Now”, No Doubt (or really anything off of Tragic Kingdom/Return of Saturn)
    “Throwing Stones”, Paula Cole
    “Self-Esteem”, The Offspring
    “Found Out About You”, Gin Blossoms
    “Special”, Garbage

    This addendum was brought to you by THE 90s!

  5. Thanks for this, I got dumped on Monday, which was also the day that my great grandma died.

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