Breaking Benjamin: Hopeless Meaning
Sorrow still remains
Will the water pull me down and wash it all away
Come and take me over
Welcome to the game
Will the current drag me down and carry me away
Suddenly the light begins to fade
anonymous Jul 3rd, 2014 7:07pm report
Quite simply, this song describes the feeling of major depression much better than I ever could, and I've lived with it for almost 10 years.
The lyrics mention drowning. Anyone who has dealt with depression, anxiety, and suicidal thoughts will tell you that they often feel like they're drowning in one emotion or another, and the feeling of hopelessness comes up quite a bit. The screaming in the chorus - Hopeless, Filthy, Worthless, Guilty - depression screams these at you. Your brain is constantly telling you these things: It's hopeless. Things are never getting better. It's all your fault. You're filthy, tainted. Worthless. You don't matter at all. You're a piece of shit who doesn't deserve to live. You're nothing. Nothing at all. Why can't you make it go away? It's your fault you feel this way. Everything bad that happens in your life and the lives of everyone you care about is all your fault. You can't change it, and it's all your fault.
I'm falling down/I can't wake up - depression feels like it's pulling you down, making it hard to hold your head up, smile, enjoy anything much at all. You can't shake it; you can't wake up from it. Additionally, excessive sleeping is a symptom.
I cannot hold on/I will not let go - This, to me, sounds like the mental fight with suicidal thoughts. "I can't do this anymore. I have to end it. No. I have to keep holding on and hope it'll get better. It won't get better. I have to find something to keep me alive, to live for."
It's over now/There's no way out - Same thing. Depression makes life seem so, well, hopeless, that you can't see a way out. You think these feelings will last forever, and sometimes it gets to the point where the only thing you think will help is suicide. You can't see any other way out of the darkness and despair.
The verses themselves seem to describe depression and suicide as well. The feeling of sinking into deep depression, the inability to care, the desire to die, that point where death will be welcome.. Many times, depressed people who reach the point of a suicide plan will become calm, even happy, because they know it's about to be over.
I don't remember if it's ever been stated outright, but I'm guessing Ben has dealt with depression. I do know it's from Dear Agony, the first album he wrote sober, and depression and alcoholism often go hand in hand, so it's a pretty safe bet.
Anyway, yeah. Depression and suicide. That's what this is about to me. It describes alcoholism pretty good, too, though. And seeing as Ben is a recovering alcoholic, it's entirely possible that's what it's about.
anonymous Aug 1st, 2019 8:06pm report
I think it's a person struggling to be good in life when he starts to get desperate because his life is going bad. "Welcome to the game" because he's constantly going from good to bad to good again. "Suddenly the light begins to fade" because he's turning to darkness (bad) rather than the light (good) and he realizes it. "Hopeless" because he wants to be good, but doesn't think he can stop doing bad things in desperate situations. "I'm falling down" as in he's failing in life. "Filthy" because he's a mess. "I can't wake up" means living life for him is like having a nightmare which he can't wake up from. "I can not hold on" because he can't and " I will not let go" means he wants to be good and wants everything good in his life, so he will fight for it all. "Worthless" as in how he feels about his life. "It's over now" because he's already lost the struggle to stay good whether he knows it or not. "Guilty" as in all of the bad things he's doing. "There's no way out" because he can't be good again. "I am not afraid" meaning he makes bad choices without fearing the consequences. "I can see the daylight shine and slowly drift away" means he can see all the good left in him leave going away. "Safe to say it's over" as in he knows he's bad and there's no fight to to turn good again. "I can hear the devil call my name" because he's bad now, and he's going to hell for it. "Hopeless" meaning there was no hope for him being good.
anonymous Feb 4th, 2017 2:14pm report
There are many ways to interpret the song. I chose the relationship route because that’s what I got from the song when I first listened to it. I try not to place in the fact that he’s struggled with alcoholism. I think he might have loved Jane very much but she moved on and he doesn’t care that she did. He’s broken and feels like it’s hopeless but he also decides he’s going to keep trying. When you’re in love, you try to force your way back in to someone’s life because you know it’s right and it could be beautiful if they only opened their heart up to you. I think from many of the songs about Jane, we can get the feeling that Jane is a very broken and a cold person. I think he wants to help her.
Here I lie forever (He’s stuck on thoughts of his ex)
Sorrow still remains (He’s still hurting)
Will the water pull me down and wash it all away (Will time make it better?)
Come and take me over (come back to him)
Welcome to the game (The game they plays. It might be a on and off again relationship)
Will the current drag me down and carry me away (He wants to escape those feelings)
Suddenly the light begins to fade (He’s losing hope)
Hopeless (He doesn’t think there’s anything he can do about the break up)
I'm falling down (It’s crippling)
Filthy (His thoughts turn to something he knows is disgusting… like hate)
I can't wake up (he can’t face reality)
I can not hold on (he knows he has to let her go)
I will not let go (he is unwilling to and will keep trying)
Worthless (She’s made him feel like nothing)
It's over now (He knows they broke up for good)
Guilty (He starts to feel guilty about everything he did to her or didn’t do for her)
There's no way out (He can’t escape his thoughts)
I cannot hold on (It’s hurting him to hold on to those memories)
I will not let go (He won’t stop until he gets her back one way or another)
Silent I go under
I am not afraid
I can see the daylight shine
And slowly drift away
Safe to say it's over
Sink into the grave
There is nothing left inside (His feelings are gone and all he feels is his own emptiness)
But I am wide awake (He might be dead inside but he’s still alive)
I can hear the devil call my name (He wants to give into temptation whatever it is. It could be lust, murder, drugs, or suicide…)
Later in the song he repeats;
(This is his internal battle with feeling like there’s no hope)
anonymous Sep 13th, 2015 9:39pm report
I think it's about death and falling into hell with the dead.
anonymous May 4th, 2015 5:23am report
He fights for the last part of sanity he goes insane not suicide at the end he tries to pill it together but its hopeless ik this cuz I read what / ben said about his song
This interpretation has been marked as poor. view anyway
anonymous Apr 15th, 2012 4:16pm report
i think this song is basicly an unknown evil trying to make him doubt himself and he is never gonna ammount to anything this necceserily dosent have to be the devil but his own self confidence that has been torn to shreds by persistant verbel attacks but he is fighting through it and is not gonna let the doubt consume him.
anonymous Jan 1st, 2012 1:46pm report
I agree that this song is, in a sense about drowning, but not in the literal sense.
"Will the water pull me down and wash it all away
Come and take me over
Welcome to the game
Will the current drag me down and carry me away"
In this, he can see his troubles/sadness/etc approaching and getting worse, and he knows it will overtake him.
"I'm falling down
I can't wake up
I can not hold on
I will not let go
It's over now
There's no way out
I can not hold on
I will not let go"
Here he is struggling to stay afloat in his life, but he knows he won't be able to overcome his sadness, and that it is hopeless. It is a lost cause but he won't give up.
"Silent I go under
I am not afraid"
As it says, he has accepted his fate and has no fear of being overcome by his reality. Whether this means death, or something else. The rest of that verse is just the process of his downfall and what happened in the last moments.
"I can hear the devil call my name"
This seals his fate, that there is no going back. It does not mean that he is going to hell, but is more of an ending phrase to show that it's over and there is no rising up again.
anonymous Jun 21st, 2011 6:29am report
I think its about death in general and being sucked into the unknown.
BLOODRAGED189 Jun 26th, 2010 6:49am report
This song is clearly about a guy drowning, for not one line doesn't fit. And to go over someones you guys might say no to, the chorus is about in order, hopelessly falling through water and not being able to get back up, he can't grasp life but he won't stop struggling to live, then last, it's over, he's going to die no doubt about it. So as you can see, I checked and literally every line fits.
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