Devotion to one person can be a giant leap that sometimes leads people to betray their partner, causing heartache for everyone involved.
There are countless songs about affairs that broach every possible angle—from heartbreak to the thrill one may feel when in a secret love affair. Here are the top songs about being unfaithful.
1. “Say My Name” By Destiny's Child
Song year: 1999
“Say my name” gives the impression that a discussion is taking place over the phone, and the singer demands that her boyfriend call her “baby” to prove that there's not another woman near him at the moment.
The girl implores her boyfriend to show her the affection he showed her yesterday. His inconsistent behavior tips her off, and she is all but sure that he is with another woman. This one is a serious throwback!
2. “A Thing Goin' On” By Coolio
Song year: 1995
This song is about an affair between Mrs. Jones and Coolio, presumably. Both people are already involved in committed relationships, and both of them wrestle with the fact they love being around each other.
What's more, the two of them feel like they're getting something from one another that their partners can't provide. They let this fact validate their forbidden romance.
3. “Heard It Through the Grapevine” By Marvin Gaye
Song year: 1968
It's one thing to discover from the horse's mouth that you're being cheated on. It's another thing entirely to learn about infidelity through the grapevine. In this song, the singer is distraught to learn that his partner is unfaithful and plans to leave him.
This song was initially performed by Gladys Knight & the Pips in 1967. However, Gaye's version of the song is most renowned.
4. “Disclosure” By Magnets ft. Lorde
Song year: 2015
This song starts with the thrill of cheating. A man is cheating on his girlfriend with the singer of the song. Initially, everything was fun and lighthearted. Then the singer falls for the man, and it manifests as jealousy.
Consequently, the attraction between the two begins to weaken because they are no longer frivolously sneaking around.
5. “Irreplaceable” By Beyoncé
Song year: 2006
“Irreplaceable” is one of the most notable songs about affairs that many women can take inspiration from. She finds out that her partner is cheating and decides to kick him out along with all of his stuff.
He carries himself like he's irreplaceable, but she quickly reminds him that she doesn't need him.
6. “She Don't Have To Know” By John Legend
Song Year: 2004
This song is about a man who doesn't have any qualms about cheating on his partner. However, he's paranoid about getting caught despite his lack of remorse.
He justifies the affair by highlighting the fact that the woman he's seeing is also cheating on her significant other. In the end, the singer believes that he will feel sorry eventually.
7. “Saving All My Love For You” By Whitney Houston
Song year: 1985
This song is famously about a woman who pines for a married man. She insists that she will save all her love and wait to give it to him.
The lyrics subtly suggest that the man won't always stay faithful to his wife because he eventually tells her to wait just a little longer. This song resonated with the public so much that it was the first song to be #1 in the Hot 100 in both the US and the UK.
8. “This Kiss” By Carly Rae Jepsen
Song year: 2012
Temptation often proves too tough to resist, and such is the case of the alluring kiss spoken of in this song. The lyrics illustrate the conflicting feelings of wanting the kiss while also wanting to remain faithful in the relationship.
While the song deals with heavy topics, it is upbeat and full of pop elements, as with many of Carly Rae Jepsen’s songs.
9. “You Know I'm No Good” By Amy Winehouse
Song year: 2006
This song speaks about regretting cheating. Amy Winehouse uses introspection and explores themes of disappointment in oneself. To add insult to injury, the singer thinks so little of herself that she expected herself to behave this way.
Profoundly, the sound is not only sad and heartbreaking for the man, but it is for the singer, too, as she loathes her behavior. The man doesn't appear to be surprised, which splinters the singer's heart even more.
10. “Careless Whisper” By George Michael
Song year: 1984
This song echoes the guilt that often accompanies a person after being unfaithful to their partner. Interestingly enough, this song was written by George Michael when he was just 17.
He was far too young to have the requisite emotional experience to truly know what he was singing about. Yet, this melancholic song is about a man who feels guilty as he dances with the woman he cheated on.
11. “My Little Secret” By Xscape
Song year: 1998
This song portrays cheating in a good light. “My Little Secret” speaks of the thrill that one feels when they are in the same room as the unsuspecting other woman.
The song makes the bold declaration that everybody cheats, but the trick is to do it the right way so that no one ever finds out about it. This was the last song released by Xscape before the group disbanded in 1998.
12. “Part-Time Lover” By Stevie Wonder
Song year: 1985
Stevie Wonder plays the role of a married man having an affair with a woman he refers to as a part-time lover. The two of them communicate secretly using lights to determine whether or not they'll be spending the night together.
They act as if they don't know one another when they are in public to keep the affair a secret. By the end of it, the singer learns that his wife is cheating on him.
13. “Should've Said No” By Taylor Swift
Song year: 2009
This song is an autobiographical piece by Taylor Swift in which her boyfriend cheated on her as a teenager. She created the song to tackle the moral ramifications of cheating while entertaining the reality that it would have been much easier to say “no” rather than cheating and destroying the entire relationship.
For one moment, she blamed herself. However, she quickly dismissed this thought and realized that he was entirely to blame for his actions.
14. “Never Again” By Kelly Clarkson
Song year: 2007
“Never Again” is a song that broaches the raw and bitter emotions that we feel after being cheated on. The song is bitter, and she doesn't wish their relationship well, which is understandable. But she also doesn't want bad things to happen.
She speaks about the fact that the new girl is naive and unaware of who she is dealing with. Clarkson states that she is wise enough to know that staying away from him is best.
15. “Little Lies” By Fleetwood Mac
Song year: 1987
In this song, the singer expresses the desire to go back to when everything in the relationship was stable and happy. Despite this desire, they know it's better to end the relationship.
Presumably, the little lies refer to the white lies we say daily to keep up appearances. All the while, the relationship is suffering. The sweet little lies are the only thing holding this flimsy relationship together.
16. “Rumor Has It” By Adele
Song year: 2011
This song was inspired because Adele's friends were asking her about rumors concerning her. She says that she wrote the song to set the record straight and remind people that you can't believe everything you hear.
However, another interpretation of the song is that she's reminding her ex that the woman that he cheated on her with will never compare to her and what they had together.
17. “Secret Lovers” By Atlantic Starr
Song year: 1985
This song is brutal! It references two married people, but they're having an affair with one another, longing to be together. They understand the ramifications of getting caught, but they can't help themselves.
They believe they're soulmates, so they begin to justify their affair by questioning whether their spouses also have secret lovers. Toward the end of the song, they ask one another if their actions are cruel.
18. “I'm Not The Only One” By Sam Smith
Song year: 2014
Sam Smith outdoes himself on this song with the vocals. You can feel the pain in his voice as he sings about being suspicious that his partner has been unfaithful for a few months. Finally, he realizes that he was right.
It seems like she's lying about the affair and trying to make him believe that her heart is his alone. He says he knows better and wishes she would have honored their vows. This song tugs at your heartstrings and makes you feel introspective.
19. “Perfume” By Britney Spears
Song year: 2015
“Perfume” is a song that goes the subtle route when getting revenge on your cheating partner. Instead of choosing to kick her cheating partner out, she wears perfume around him. The idea is that the other girl will be able to detect it, and it might make her break up with him.
This strategy could be her wanting to keep him around because she loves him so much, or it could be just to let the other girl know. By the end of the song, she leaves him.
20. “Thinking of You” By Katy Perry
Song year: 2008
“Thinking of You” is a highly relatable song that many people have experienced. Perry sings about how she struggles to let go of her ex-boyfriend after finding out he was cheating. She understood that she had to leave him, but she also loved him and didn't want to move on.
She speaks about how she always thought of him, even when dating someone new. Katy Perry uses a metaphor in this song, comparing an apple with a seed to her current situation. Even once the apple is gone, you still have the seed, similar to memories, that linger and remind you of what you once had.
21. “Cry Me a River” By Justin Timberlake
Song year: 2002
Justin Timberlake shows no mercy in “Cry Me a River.” He finds out that his girlfriend has cheated on him numerous times, and he isn't up for lengthy conversations, forgiveness, or any of that.
He has no sympathy toward why she may have cheated, nor does he have any desire to stick by her through the turmoil. He has decided to move on, and there's nothing that makes him yearn to understand or forgive her. This is truly an anthem about putting yourself first!
22. “Secret Love” By Little Mix
Song year: 2015
While there are some varying interpretations, the consensus is that the song speaks of forbidden love between a man and a woman that is dating someone else. They desire to be together but understand that they can't be seen together.
The song taps into the frustration of feeling like you've met your special someone but being conflicted because you don't want to hurt the person you're with.
23. “Can't Do a Thing To Stop Me” By Chris Isaak
Song year: 1993
It's not uncommon that one would assume the best way to get over your ex is to stop thinking about them. If one person is still holding on to the hope of a rekindled relationship, the former partner might demand that they stop thinking about them.
Well, in this song, Chris Isaak makes it clear that there's nothing his ex can do to make him stop thinking of her. Reminiscing about her makes his days go by easier. It's comforting, and he even dates someone that reminds him of her. Healthy? Not so much, but nobody can stop him!
24. “Girlfriend” By Michael Jackson
Song year: 1979
Unlike many other songs discussing hiding a secret relationship, “Girlfriend” is the complete opposite. Michael Jackson sings about having an affair with a woman and wanting her to make it known to her boyfriend. That way, the two can be together at last.
That's a bold move that could go wrong in many ways!
25. “Call Your Girlfriend” By Robyn
Song year: 2010
Songs about being unfaithful are complicated! Robyn wants the man she's seeing to break up with his girlfriend so that they can be together. She also wants him to do it gently.
She urges him not to reveal the reasons why he wants to leave because that's hurtful, but she does want to be with him. While Robyn's overall disposition is cold because she's willing to break up someone's relationship, she also genuinely cares about the girlfriend's feelings.
26. “4AM” By Melanie Fiona
Song year: 2012
“4 AM” is one of those heart-wrenching songs about affairs that make you feel for the woman involved. The singer discovers her partner is cheating on her. She understands that she should stand up for herself and that she deserves better than his infidelity.
It's unfortunate because people find themselves in relationships that they know are unhealthy, but it's hard to break that bond and familiarity. It’s speculated that this song is based on a real situation.
27. “Follow Me” By Uncle Kracker
Song year: 2000
In “Follow Me,” the man tries to convince a woman he's in a relationship with that she should continue to be with him, even though she's already seeing somebody.
He reassures her that all is well, primarily because she doesn't seem ashamed of her actions. For that reason, he assumes that she couldn't be that sorry for her actions, so she should move along with him.
28. “Borrowed” By LeAnn Rimes
Song year: 2013
LeAnn Rimes discusses when she started a relationship with Eddie Cibrian, even though they were both married at the time.
Her disposition in the song goes between being remorseful for the affair and nonchalant toward the situation. She says that she doesn't want to give him back, but she also knows that he's just borrowed and not truly hers.
29. “It's Not Right But It's Okay” By Whitney Houston
Song year: 1998
Whitney Houston, one of the industry's all-time greats, sings a riveting track about how she has seen all the signs that her man is cheating. Yet, she's at peace.
Instead of stressing out about the situation, she decides to tell him that he needs to leave and never come back. She would rather be by herself than be unhappy. For her, the way he treated her wasn't right, but it's okay; she'll move on just fine.
30. “Beautiful Liar” By Beyonce and Shakira
Song year: 2006
“Beautiful Liar” by Beyonce and Shakira is about two women who realize they've been dating the same man. He was cheating on both women simultaneously. The women decided it was better to leave him alone than fight each other over someone who had ill intentions.
It's a simple song, but the video features two divas that resemble one another and have great voices. They also match the mesmerizing dance moves with it to make it fun.
31. “Call Out My Name” By The Weeknd
Song year: 2018
The Weeknd doesn't hold back when talking about his experience with betrayal. He talks about his girlfriend leaving their relationship for another guy she met.
Rumor has it that this song is about his ex-girlfriend Selena Gomez deciding to date Justin Bieber shortly after their relationship ended.
32. “Dilemma” By Nelly ft. Kelly Rowland
Song year: 2002
“Dilemma” talks about a woman who just moved to the neighborhood, and is drawn to one of the residents. The problem? She's already in a relationship and has a child.
The man in the song says he wouldn't break up a happy home, so he's content playing his position until he can make her his girl. She makes it clear that all she thinks about is him, no matter what she does or if she's with her current boyfriend.
33. “Hit Em Up Style” By Blu Cantrell
Song year: 2001
Want to get revenge on your cheating boyfriend? You can throw their things out on the lawn, smash their belongings, burn their clothes in a trash can, the whole nine yards.
Or, you can take Blu Cantrell's advice: spend, spend, spend! She advises ladies to get his cash and credit cards and treat themselves to the shopping spree of a lifetime. No harm, no foul!
34. “Unfaithful” By Rihanna
Song year: 2006
Leave it to RiRi to sway us with her Barbadian accent as she sings along to this tune, making listeners understand that she doesn't want to be a part of an affair. She doesn't want to be the girl that breaks her guy's heart, as she can see that her infidelity is killing him.
This song is fascinating because you somehow feel like she is the victim in all of this. It's one of those songs that elicits confusing emotions.
35. “Sorry” By Beyonce
Song year: 2016
Beyonce has given plenty of material from her Lemonade album that we could use, but we've settled on “Sorry.” It's a song about how she knows her boyfriend is cheating and decides to go out and live her life just as he has.
Beyonce makes it clear as she's singing that he only wants her around when she's not there. Unfortunately, she doesn't care anymore and wants him to leave her alone while she acts accordingly.
Best Songs About Affairs, Final Thoughts
Infidelity is a touchy subject, and it is never fun for the people on the receiving end. These iconic songs about affairs come from different perspectives, whether you're the victim or the one engaging in forbidden love.
These songs about being unfaithful take you through a myriad of emotions that make you feel guilty, sad, hopeful, and remorseful. Keep in mind that relationships are sacred and meant to be respected!