Why You Want to Hear Sad Music

Depression, Featured Article, Mental Health & Sleep Center
on May 15, 2013
Sad young woman listening to music.

Let’s face it: We all love to wallow a little when we’re broken-hearted. So it’s no surprise a new study says that we naturally seek out music, books, music and other “aesthetic experiences” that match what’s happening in our interpersonal relationships. The Journal of Consumer Research reports that, in a series of studies, people who had suffered a personal loss expressed a higher preference for sad music, while people who were frustrated with a friend or partner rated angry music higher than happy songs.

The authors concluded, “Interpersonal relationships influence consumer preference for aesthetic experiences. Consumers seek and experience emotional companionship with music, films, novels, and the fine arts as a substitute for lost and troubled relationships.”

So go ahead and wallow! But when you’re ready for some upbeat music, check out our Depression-Fighting Playlist.