“You’re Not Sorry” by Taylor Swift

Taylor Swift went through her fair share of romantic disappointments as a teenager. But she also possesses the ability to turn such situations into hit songs. And we’ve already dealt with a couple of her other Fearless tracks which are based on such premises. For instance, “Fifteen” features a friend being done so dirty by a lover that Taylor also can’t help but to feel for her. 

And “Tell Me Why” has Swift addressing a less-than-ideal romantic interest, a lot like the song we’re dealing with today. But the addressee this time around is someone different. In “Tell Me Why” it was a romantic interest in the truest sense of the word, i.e. someone who, thankfully for her, she never ended up dating in real life. But in “You’re Not Sorry”, the lyrics are in fact based on one of her ex-boyfriends.

Verily if anything, this song is more similar to “Fifteen” than it is “Tell Me Why”, even if in the former case the focus is more on a friend’s romance. That’s because the storyline of “Fifteen” revolves around how, at one point in life, Taylor was quite naïve as far as the opposite sex is concerned. 

And it is a similar scenario in “You’re Not Sorry”, though the focus is on one specific dude. So it is quite possible that “Fifteen” and this song are set in the same era of Taylor Swift’s life. Or put differently, this would perhaps be one of the guys, if not the main one, who taught her that she was perhaps too trusting when it comes to romance.

The Lyrics

In fact from the jump, Taylor sounds a lot like how Abigail was portrayed in “Fifteen“. The singer finds herself giving her all to a love which is not reciprocated. And it has ‘taken her long to figure out’ that such is actually the case, as in the dude at hand being a faker. 

However, along the way she has also apparently broken up with him a number of times, only to eventually take the guy back. But as put forth in the chorus, this time around “is the last straw”.

Or as Taylor elaborates, his persistent screw-ups have now resulted in her no longer trusting him. And resultantly she is giving him the boot. But that is not to say that doing so is easy. Indeed even now, in the midst of getting sacked, he is begging her forgiveness, on top of “looking so innocent”. 

Moreover, this is someone whom the vocalist could actually envision spending the rest of her life with, i.e. marrying.

“You’re Not Sorry”

But now that she knows him good and well, she’s not going to allow herself to be deceived yet again. That is what she means by “you’re not sorry”. He may say “sorry”, but she knows he doesn’t really mean it. And the vocalist has become privy to such via being gradually enlightened to different “secrets” from his past, as well as present. 

So this makeup-then-breakup cycle is actually grounded in her learning more and more about who he truly is. This is made more painful by her always “being [the] last to know”, insinuating that this knowledge is being revealed to her via embarrassing gossip. 

But more to the point, what these revelations represent is him not being the person – a “prince charming” as Taylor explained in her own words – whom he presented himself as. So she actually agreed to this romance under false pretexts, sorta like being defrauded and then later learning the truth.

So now, apparently to his chagrin, the addressee is being cut off. The narrator can no longer endure the “hurt” of being in love with him. And yes she was in fact in love, “crawling for” dude even, on top of being committed for life. But now that her perception of him has gone through a 360 degree turn, she no longer wants to associate with him, at all.

Lyrics for "You're Not Sorry"

Facts about “You’re Not Sorry”

Nathan Chapman, a musician from Tennessee, is the primary producer of Fearless, an album which earned both he and Taylor a couple of Grammy Awards. But Taylor also served as co-producer, so they both get production credit on this track.

Meanwhile the song was written exclusively by Swift. And as the story goes she did pen it while in her feelings, i.e. when she finally decided to breakup with the addressee. And said addressee would apparently be some non-celebrity she dated before blowing up.

Taylor Swift explains "You're Not Sorry"

Big Machine Records made You’re Not Sorry public on 28 October 2008. This was a couple of weeks before Fearless itself came out, as this track was a promotional single for the album.

And the song fared well for a promotional single, especially for one that was not played on radio. For instance, it peaked at number 11 on both the Billboard Hot 100 and Canadian Hot 100. And it has also been certified platinum in the United States.

Additionally there is a remix of this song out there, as premiered on an episode of the television drama series CSI: Crime Scene Investigation. Said episode, entitled “Turn, Turn, Turn”, first aired on 5 March 2009 and actually featured Taylor Swift.

“You’re Not Sorry” held a permanent place on the setlist of Taylor Swift’s Fearless Tour (2009-2010). And she would perform the song in conjunction with a cover of Justin Timberlake’s “What Goes Around… Comes Around” (2006).

You're Not Sorry
Cover art of Taylor’s “You’re Not Sorry”

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