58 Songs About Haters, Bullies, and Other Mean, Jealous People
G-r-r-r-ouchy and Ready to Ruin Your Day
Haters & Bullies: People Who Try to Break Your Spirit
Whether on the playground or in the boardroom, in the neighborhood or even at church, bullying is the most common form of violence in the United States.1 Bullies, haters, and other jealous jerks spread their contempt and disgust through...
- threats and intimidation
- harassment and
- physical aggression.
If you identify with having one of these soul-sucking, spirit-shattering, and self-esteem destroying haters in your life, stay strong and tell your story. (Haters prefer that you suffer in silence.) And if you witness it happening, do the right thing and speak up.
These rock, pop, country, punk, and R&B songs can help you create a playlist of songs about bullying and standing up to the haters in your life. They represent all perspectives: victim, bystander, and even the bully.
And if you're looking for practical advice on how to stand up to difficult people such as bullies, haters, and other mean, jealous people, I recommended the book below as a good, practical resource for helping to deal with life's unpleasant people.
Remember, you are not alone.
Bullying Knows No BoundariesClick thumbnail to view full-size
1. "Mean" by Taylor Swift
Leave it to Taylor Swift to turn a performance debacle into a personal and professional win. When she performed poorly at the Grammys singing with legendary superstar Stevie Nicks, Taylor was lambasted with negative reviews. Some people even predicted it would be the end of her music career.
But Taylor wouldn't be shamed. She shot back with this 2010 anti-bullying anthem about an especially nasty critic. Describing him as "mean and a liar and pathetic and alone in life," the singer called him out on his "wildfire lies" and his words which were "like knives and swords and weapons."
Take that, you bully!
2. "How Do You Like Me Now?" by Toby Keith
Do you remember that guy in high school who desperately tried to get your attention? Of course not, but he remembers you.
And he still harbors a 20-year grudge, the same kind that Toby Keith is singing about in this 1999 song about a boy who was overlooked in high school by the perfect girl, the pretty valedictorian. She mocked the poor fella for his dreams of music stardom, and he just couldn't forget it.
Now he's famous, and she's trapped in an unhappy marriage. So who's the bully these days? (Hey, Toby, at least in high school she could blame it on being young and immature.)
3. "One Of These Days" by Tim McGraw
Tim McGraw tugs at the heartstrings in this 1997 song about a regretful bully. The song's narrator recalls the red-headed, freckled-faced boy on the playground that he pushed, shoved and picked on. He also remembers the jilted teenage girl whom he (ahem) didn't treat respectfully.
As an adult, he realizes that underneath it all is his own self-loathing and that one of these days he'll learn to love and accept himself.
The Mean Girl Brigade
4. "Haters" by Hilary Duff
With lyrics that could be straight out of high school, Hilary Duff shames the haters in this in-your-face 2004 song. She accuses her haters of
- disliking who they are
- being superficial
- merely pretending to be nice
- feeling jealous and angry and
- breaking promises and treaties.
Although some people assumed that the song was about Lindsay Lohan (whom she was feuding with at the time), the singer denied it.
Where have you encountered your nastiest, most relentless bullies?
5."Bully" by Shinedown
Alternative rock band Shinedown offers this powerful anti-bullying song (2012) that recounts how it feels to be picked on unfairly:
It's 8 a.m., this hell I'm in
Seems I've crossed a line again
For being nothing more than who I am
So break my bones and throw your stones.
We all know that life ain't fair
But there's more of us we're everywhere.
The song then imagines righting the bully's wrong through vigilante justice. Shinedown says its lyrics do not condone violence but rather convey a symbolic message about standing up for oneself when you're being picked on.
Ready to Rumble
6. "Don't You Just Hate Those People?" by Jennette McCurdy
When you're recovering from heartbreak, seeing couples in love publicly displaying affection can turn you into a grump and a hater. Sadly single, Jennette McCurdy (2011) hates to be reminded of that fact in this country song. They make her want to scream.
7. "Fighter" by Christina Aguilera
Betrayal has unleashed the fighter in Christina Aguilera. This 2002 song tells what it is like have someone you trust backstab you and then play the victim. Instead of crying, however, she's thankful for the experience because it's made her stronger, more resilient, and a fighter. You go, girl!
8. "Shame Shame Shame" by Shirley and Company
Haters shame people, but the only reason Shirley and Company is dishing out shame in this fun 1974 disco classic is if you can't dance.
The narrator is looking for a dance partner, and her mate is less-than-willing. So she threatens to go find her someone else who can dance the night away. Do you think she shamed him into partying with her?
9. "Buzzkill" by Luke Bryan
The heartless ex-girlfriend in Luke Bryan's 2013 song is nothing but a downer, and he tells her so. She's one of those mean people, and she makes him feel like
- an insufficient funds notice
- cops knocking on the door at the start of a party
- a dark rain cloud over his boat and
- a fumble on the one-yard line.
So why is she still coming around? And why does he keep allowing her to ruin his day?
10. "H.A.T.E.U." by Mariah Carey
Sometimes it's difficult to let go of a relationship that has ended when all you're left with is emotional baggage. In this 2009 song by Mariah Carey, the protagonist can't wait to hate her lover. She's changed her number and has contemplated moving away. The emotional bully in her wants to break him down just to see him suffer.
Snarl Like a Pro!
Hey, Hater! Five Steps to the Perfect Snarl
- Think mean thoughts.
- Lightly crinkle your eyebrows as if you're confused.
- Part your lips and bare your teeth. (No smiling!)
- Wrinkle your nose in a one-sided "disgust" look as if someone just farted.
- Glare at your intended target.
Didn't that take a lot of work? It's easier to simply smile.
11. "Mean Girls" by Rachel Crow
Rachel Crow connects with every school girl who's been belittled, picked on, or marginalized by the "in" crowd in this 2012 song. Labeled as an outcast for some real or imaginary fault, the girl in the song must suffer through eating lunch alone and name-calling. But then she resolves that bullying is not okay: "You no longer run my world."
12. "Nothing to Lose" by Billy Talent
There weren't enough caring souls to save the suffering schoolboy in this song by Canadian punk rock group Billy Talent (2004).
Other kids made him feel miserable. Teachers dismissed his sadness as a phase, and his parents were completely in the dark. When he died at 17, no one knew his name. Then at 17 years old, he was gone, leaving behind a notebook that described his experience.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255
If you or someone you know is suffering, get help. Don't wait. Don't let them become a sad statistic.
13. "Outcast" by Kerrie Roberts
Imagine proudly embracing your status as a social reject. In this positive song with a message, Kerrie Roberts (2010) refuses to be shamed for being different:
I'm not good enough, I'm not what they want
But let me tell you what: I know who I am
So just throw me out for not fitting in
I will stand my ground and be an outcast... .
14. "Hate On Me" by Jill Scott
This 2007 R&B song is a strong anti-bullying anthem, for which Jill Scott earned a Grammy nomination. In the song, she urges her haters to go ahead and hate on her because her mind is free and she's fearless.
Haters Gonna Hate
15. "Dem Haters" by Rihanna
Rihanna (2006) recommends that you exclude two-faced people from your inner circle before they wreak further havoc on your trust with their lies and jealousy. She was reportedly a target of school bullies while growing up in Barbados. They targeted her for her light skin complexion.
16. "Independence Day" by Martina McBride
When this powerful Martina McBride was released in 1994, it stirred some controversy for its strong and tragic symbolism. The song tells the story of domestic abuse from the perspective of a child, concentrating on one woman who chose to deal with her abuser violently in order to save herself and her daughter.
17. "I Saw It" by the Barenaked Ladies
Told from a bystander's perspective, this rock song by the Barenaked Ladies (2010) is an example of how people are moved to action after a peer is bullied on the playground in front of them. Even though they didn't do the right thing at first, they commit to not allowing the situation to recur:
You think you deserve it
And I won't stand and observe it
From this point on
We won't allow this, brother
If we don't end this now
There'll be others ... .
You Don't Have to Put up with Bullies
18. "Jeremy" by Pearl Jam
Pearl Jam tells the dark story about inflicting cruelty upon a fellow classmate, Jeremy, who was quiet and different. Unaware that he was deeply troubled, the kids tormented him, and Jeremy struck back in a way that would scar them all forever.
19. "Shake Them Haters Off" by Kelly Rowland
Kelly Rowland (2010) knows that haters never take a vacation. But she's not worried because she uses their negative energy to fuel her desire to climb even higher. She just shakes them haters off.
20. "Hater" by Isyss
In this song, it looks like the former girlfriend is the jealous one. This 2002 song by Isyss (short for "Intelligent Sexy Young Soul Sisters") is told from the hater's perspective.
She disses the new girlfriend's attire and engages in nasty name-calling, intent on breaking up the new lovebirds. Girl, move on! All that negative energy is making you ugly.
Outrageously Happy Kitten
Okay, Now It's Confession Time (Don't Worry, We Won't Tell)
Have YOU ever bullied or hated on someone else in one of these ways?
21. "Jealous" by Nick Jonas
Beware of the possessive boyfriend who wants to control your behavior. It may start with telling you what to wear, what to post online, or who to hang out with. The attention he's giving you may be flattering at first, but it'll get old real soon. He's a bully underneath. Nick Jonas (2014) covers the not-so-lighthearted topic in a lighthearted way.
22. "Shake It Off" by Taylor Swift
With three songs on this song list, this girl knows what she's talking about!
Taylor Swift (2014) turns the tables on all her haters who criticize her love life, her dancing, and everything else about her. She sends a fun message to the liars, cheats, and fakers: she's just gonna shake it off.
23. "Leave" by Michael W. Smith
Contemporary Christian singer Michael W. Smith (2010) describes the desperation of a child abused at the hands of his father and bullied by schoolmates. Others who could help him pretend they don't notice his pain, and he wishes to escape by simply leaving.
Mean Sign: Seriously, Do Not Park Here
24. "Mean People Suck" by NOFX
Punk rock group NOFX released this 1989 song which simply repeats the lyrics "mean people suck." Ah, simplicity.
25. "Coward of the County" by Kenny Rogers
How far would you go to protect the people you love? Kenny Rogers (1979) tells the story of the county coward named Tommy, whose father died in prison and on his deathbed encouraged the boy to walk away from trouble when possible.
Tommy was known as the coward of the county until a group of three bullies assaulted his wife, Becky. Then, the coward could no longer turn the other cheek. He unleashed everything he had in her defense.
26. "Baseball Cap" by Faithless
Faithless (1996) describes a 14-year-old boy who was accosted by a group of thugs for his treasured baseball cap. The boy stews over the incident and is ready to retaliate. Upon telling his uncle how upset he is, the teen gains necessary perspective. Things can be replaced; just be glad you're still alive.
27. "Stand Tall" by Lauren Irwin
Lauren Irwin (2010) tries to bring hope to those feeling shoved around and marginalized. She emphasizes the value of uniqueness and urges people to stand tall, be firm, be heard, and unite.
28. "Cold as Ice" by Foreigner
Bullies and mean people aren't always strangers. Sometimes they are our lovers and closest confidantes, making them doubly dangerous. Foreigner (1977) reminds us of the dangers of a lover with a heart as cold as ice.
29. "Hater" by Miranda Brooke
Miranda Brooke acknowledges she's a hater in this 2010 song. Her lover has become a new, improved version of his cheating self and left her for another woman.
30. "Nothing In Between (B*tch)" by Meredith Brooke
In this popular song, Meredith Brooke (1997) reminds us that we're not always good or bad, victim or bully. Sometimes we're both.
I'm a b*tch, I'm a lover
I'm a child, I'm a mother
I'm a sinner, I'm a saint
I do not feel ashamed.
I'm your hell, I'm your dream
I'm nothing in between
You know you wouldn't want it any other way... .
31. "Hey, Bully" by Morgan Frazier
In this 2013 song, Morgan Frazier takes the perspective of the bully's target who doesn't understand why she is being picked on. She tries to get the bully to empathize with the level of pain and isolation that she experiences from the teasing. "Did someone hurt you—make you feel small? " she asks.
Many bullies have also been victims themselves at some point. In the long run, such "bully-victims" fare worse psychologically than other victims, as they are at higher risk for:
depression and anxiety
hyperactive behavior and
Will Her Face Freeze Like This?
32. "Don't Laugh at Me" by Mark Willis
Mark Willis (1998) reminds us all that in God's eyes, we are all perfect. Whether we're the kid with braces or glasses, the teenage mother, the homeless man, or anyone in between, each of us puts our pants on one leg at a time.
33. "Frenemy" by Laure Milan
In this R&B song, Laure Milan (2010) says goodbye to a fake friend, as some betrayals cut so deeply they can't be reconciled.
34. "Mean B*tch" by Taddy Porter
When you're caught between two lovers, there comes a point when you'll need to choose. In this rock song by Taddy Porter (2010), the narrator finds himself at that crossroads and warns his lover that the other woman is a real nasty lady.
35. "Bad Blood" by Taylor Swift
Watch out, backstabbing ex-boyfriends of Taylor Swift: If you cross her, she will go all gangsta on you by writing a song about you. (That's kinda mean, isn't it?)
This song documents an old flame who "made a really deep cut" then made it worse by rubbing salt in the wound. Now they've got bad blood that can't be undone. Isn't it so much fun guessing who her songs are about?
Haters: Don't Fall For Their Tricks and Traps
Even More Songs About Bullies, Haters, and Mean, Jealous People
37. She's So Mean
38. I Told You I Was Mean
Bars & Melody
40. Sharks in the Swimming Pool
Three Days Grace
Maddie & Tae
46. Nothin' Grows in Shadows
48. You Had to Pick on Me
49 They Don't Understand
50. Dare to be Different
51. Alyssa Lies
Jason Michael Carroll
52. No Money
54. Who's Laughing Now?
55. Mr. Misunderstood
57. People Like Us
58. You're Not Innocent
Quotes About Bullying, Haters, Creeps, Jerks, and Mean People
"Hate is too great a burden to bear. It injures the hater more than it injures the hated." - Coretta Scott King, widow of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
"Don’t hate what you can’t imitate!" - Unknown
"No one can make you feel inferior without your consent." - Eleanor Roosevelt, former first lady and diplomat
"Haters are my motivators." - Nicki Minaj, American rapper and singer-songwriter
"Hatred makes us all ugly." - Laurell K. Hamilton, American writer
"Haters never win. I just think that's true about life because negative energy always costs in the end." - Tom Hiddleston, English actor
"There's a certain logic to avoiding haters, but as a strategy, it's utterly flawed. When you turn off the feedback, you lose the benefits as well as the drawbacks. It's like having a sore finger and cutting off your arm." - Rob Manuel, American digital artist
"The haters always scream the loudest." - Tucker Max, American Author
"Something about winning attracts losers with opinions." - Unknown
"Haters are cowards. When confronted, they often back down. We must resist haters." - Janet Reno, former U.S. Attorney General
"I will permit no man to narrow and degrade my soul by making me hate him." - Booker T. Washington, American author and civil rights leader
"Make your supporters proud and your haters jealous." - Unknown
"It is only out of ignorance that people are cruel because they don't think it will come back." - Maya Angelou, American writer
"An open enemy is better than a false friend." - Greek proverb
"Always give your best. Never get discouraged. Never be petty. Others may hate you. But those who hate you don't win unless you hate them. And then you destroy yourself." - Richard M. Nixon, 37th U.S. President
"Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind." - Dr. Seuss
A Bully By Any Other Name Is Still Just A Bully
Other Words For Bullies
Office Mean Girl
Smile Like You Mean It and Don't Let Anyone Steal Your Joy
Characteristics of Bullies and the Bully-Prone
Risk Factors for Being Bullied at School
Risk Factors for Being Bullied at Work
Risk Factors for Bullying Others
Noticeable rejection and isolation by peers
Very competent and job, receives a lot of positive attention
Raised in a family environment characterized by conflict and poor parenting
Experiencing difficulties with solving social problems
Perceived as well-liked and popular
Alcohol and substance abuse problems
Physical weakness (thinner, smaller, shorter, less muscular, etc.)
New employee or new to the department
Mental healh problems
Non-confrontational, less assertive
Has negative attitudes and beliefs about self and others
Special needs (physical or mental disability)
Noticeably different (e.g., accent, attire, less attractive, LGBT)
LGBT or perceived as such
Has a disability
Poor social problem-solving skills
1Cohn, Andrea, and Andrea Canter. "NASP Fact Sheet - Bullying." National Association of School Psychologists. Accessed November 15, 2015. http://www.naspcenter.org/factsheets/bullying_fs.html.
2 Dewar, Gwen. "Bully-victims: Bullies who get bullied by others." Parenting Science. Last modified 2008. http://www.parentingscience.com/bully-victims.html.
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