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Meaning of ‘Both Ways’ by ‘The Script’

Released: 2024

“Both Ways” by The Script dives into the raw trenches of heartache and the magnetic pull between two people who are trying to navigate their emotions post-breakup. The song captures the emotional tug-of-war, articulating feelings that are often hard to express—those bittersweet moments of missing someone but also recognizing the reasons you’re apart.

The opening lines immediately set the tone for vulnerability masked by pretense. When it says, “I said that I was high to hide my red eyes”, it’s all about putting up a front to hide the pain, a common coping mechanism. The phrase “Said I was glad to see you gone, but underneath, I’m dyin'” reveals the internal struggle of appearing strong while feeling the total opposite. This duality is a central theme throughout the song, where outward expressions don’t match the turmoil brewing inside.

The chorus introduces an anthem-like admission with “If you miss it, miss the magic, miss the feeling, then the feeling goes both ways”. This is the heart of the song, highlighting that the longing and emotional connection are still alive, pulsating like electricity. It’s a recognition that despite the physical distance or whatever led to their separation, the emotional bond remains strong, affecting both individuals equally. It uses metaphors like “Like the river, like the traffic, like the flow of the words we say” to paint a vivid picture of how natural and unavoidable these feelings are, much like the undeniable laws of nature.

The latter verses touch on stereotypical masculinity with “See I’m a big boy, no, we don’t cry”, questioning societal norms around how men are supposed to handle emotional pain. This reiterates the theme of hiding true feelings behind a facade. The song suggests that despite the facade, the gravitational pull towards each other is inevitable, as stated in “‘Cause gravity will bring you back to me (will bring you back to me)”. It’s an admission that no matter how far they drift apart, there’s something fundamental that ties them together.

Ending on a repetitive note with lines like “It goes, it goes, goes a- both ways, yeah”, the song underlines the cyclical nature of their feelings, emphasizing that the emotional connection is still strong, still present, and mutually felt. It’s a mix of hope and resignation, straddling the line between wanting to reconnect and understanding the reasons for staying apart.

In essence, “Both Ways” is a poignant exploration of the complex emotions that come with missing someone you’ve loved and lost. The Script masterfully uses straightforward yet evocative language to paint a picture of this universal battle between heart and mind, making it relatable to anyone who’s experienced the push and pull of a deeply felt connection that, for whatever reason, couldn’t last.

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