Why Jack Antonoff’s picture of Taylor Swift creating ‘You’re Losing Me’ has fans spiraling

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Taylor Swift is no stranger to a sad song, but "You're Losing Me" might be one of her most devastating.

To celebrate being named Spotify's top global artist of 2023, Swift released the fan-favorite song on streaming services, finally allowing fans who missed May's limited release to listen.

“I was trying to think of a way to thank you, and a lot of you have been asking me to put “You’re Losing Me (From The Vault)” on streaming... so here you go! You can finally listen EVERYWHERE now,” she said on Instagram.

But a new detail shared by her producer has fans launching on a whole new string of theories about what drove Swift to write the song.

When was 'You're Losing Me' written? Jack Antonoff reveals

Jack Antonoff, Swift's close friend and collaborator, also celebrated the streaming drop of the song, of which he served as a writer and producer. On Instagram Nov. 29, he revealed behind-the-scenes details about the track.

Antonoff posted a picture to Instagram stories of Swift wearing a sweater and eating raisins in a kitchen with a bottle of what appears to be wine.

"you're losing me is out today," he wrote over the picture. "a very special track from the midnights sessions that's finally (streaming)! written and recorded at home on 12/5/21 right after taylor ate these raisins."

Why the date matters to Taylor Swift fans

While written in 2021, the track, a devastating song that chronicles the gradual end of a relationship, came out more than a year later in May 2023, shortly after reports of Swift’s split from Joe Alwyn surfaced. The timing of the original release led many to believe it was inspired by their breakup. (Swift is now in a relationship with Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce.)

Now, knowing the date the track was recorded, Swift fans are looking at the timeline of her relationship with Alwyn — and her albums released around that time — in a whole new light with the belief that the relationship was struggling earlier on than fans originally thought.

"youre losing me being written in 2021 oh midnights and even some of folklore and evermore kinda hit different," one person said on X, accompanied by a collage of sobbing, screaming and overthinking reaction videos.

What was going on in Taylor Swift's professional life in 2021

In 2021, Swift seemed on top of the world. She successfully released her first re-recordings, "Fearless" and "Red," part of a continuing mission to reclaim ownership of her first six albums. The year prior, she released two albums, “Folklore,” which won a Grammy Award for album of the year, and “Evermore.”

She was rarely photographed with Alwyn throughout the course of their relationship, but in March and May of 2021, she gave a shoutout to Alwyn for his support in making “Folklore” and “Evermore,” for which he was credited as a co-writer.

“Joe, who is the first person that I play every single song that I write, and I had the best time writing songs with you in quarantine,” Swift said at the Grammys in March 2021.

“I would love the opportunity to thank the amazing creative people that I made those albums with. Thank you, Aaron Dessner, thank you Jack Antonoff, Joe,” she added at the Brit Awards in May, pausing to smile at the camera.

It wasn't until February 2022 that the two referenced their relationship again, leading fans to believe the couple went through a temporary rough patch around the end of the 2021, which now lines up to the time of the song's recording.

"This was 10 months after you’re losing me, The entire timeline has changed," one fan wrote beside pics of Swift and Alwyn on a walk in 2022.

What else Taylor Swift said about the 'Midnights' album connection to Joe Alwyn

By October 2022, Swift spoke glowingly of her relationship with Alwyn. Shortly before she released "Midnights," she shared that the album’s opening track, “Lavender Haze,” references the idea of an “all-encompassing love glow.”

“If the world finds out that you’re in love with somebody, they’re going to weigh in on it,” she said in a video that has since been deleted from Instagram. “My relationship for six years, we’ve had to dodge weird rumors, tabloid stuff — and we just ignore it. This song is sort of about the act of ignoring that stuff to protect the real stuff.”

"you guys… the lavender haze reel was posted after you’re losing me was recorded," one person wrote on X.

Fans say 'You're Losing Me' has 'the saddest lyrics ever'

"You're Losing Me" was first available exclusively on the CD for a special edition of her Grammy-nominated 2022 record “Midnights,” with two new artist features.

The deluxe album, “Midnights: Til Dawn,” dropped in May before her "Eras Tour" concert in New Jersey.

Just the song's title — “You’re Losing Me” — sent fans spiraling from the beginning. The singer is known for her devastating lyrics about heartbreak, from “Dear John” — which many, including Taylor Lautner, think chronicles her breakup with John Mayer — and “All Too Well,” tied to Jake Gyllenhaal.

“You’re Losing Me” turned out to be no exception.

The song walks through lyrics about debating whether to leave or stay in a relationship, like, “Now, I just sit in the dark and wonder if it’s time/ Do I throw out everything we built or keep it?”

In the chorus, Swift sends a plea to her other half, warning, “Stop, you’re losing me,” with, “I’m fading, thinking/ ‘Do something, babe, say something’/ ‘Lose something, babe, risk something.’”

Fans have been quick to discuss the sad song on social media.

One Twitter user wrote, “taylor swift dropping youre losing me with the saddest lyrics ever how am i suppose to get up.”

Others thought that the lyrics explained why Swift and Alwyn allegedly split, as she sings about confronting a relationship that was “sick,” even if the other person wouldn't admit it.

“If you look at the lyrics of You’re Losing Me it just shows that the relationship ended up falling apart as some relationships do. Not every breakup has to have a villain and a hero, the relationship just ended, that’s all there is to it,” one user wrote.

The former couple were often shrouded in engagement rumors, and marriage is a theme of the song.

“I wouldn’t marry me either/ A pathological people pleaser,” she sings.

When the former couple did address engagement rumors, they appeared to be coy brush-offs.

“I mean, the truth is, if the answer was yes, I wouldn’t say, and if the answer was no, I wouldn’t say,” Alwyn told The Wall Street Journal in April 2022 while discussing whether he and the pop star were engaged.

Many also pointed the musical and metaphorical similarities to her touching love song, “Cornelia Street,” from the 2019 album “Lover.”

In addition to having a similar beat, the lyrics appear to line up, with the “Cornelia Street” chorus, repeating, “I hope I never lose you, hope it never ends/ I’d never walk Cornelia Street again.”

“It really went from ‘I hope I never lose you, I hope this never ends’ to ‘Stop. You’re Losing Me,’” one Twitter user wrote, with several crying-face emoji.

The new track isn’t the first song on the “Midnights” album to grapple with heartbreak. In “Anti-Hero,” Swift dubs herself “the problem,” while many people found that “Bigger Than The Whole Sky” helped them process their grief after experiencing pregnancy loss and miscarriage.

But many tunes functioned as love songs, from “Labyrinth” and its repeating refrain of “Oh, oh, I’m falling in love,” and “Sweet Nothing,” which gets its name from the lyric, “All that you ever wanted from me was sweet nothing.”

‘You’re Losing Me’ lyrics

“You’re Losing Me” was originally released exclusively on the CD format of the “Midnights (The Late Night Edition)” at MetLife Stadium ahead of her string of shows in East Rutherford, New Jersey, which began May 26.

Later that day, the singer announced a 24-hour limited digital download release of the album, which included the vault song.

Here's all the lyrics to Swift's latest song:

You say, “I don’t understand” and I say, “I know you don’t”

We thought a cure would come through in time, now, I fear it won’t

Remember looking at this room, we loved it ‘cause of the light

Now, I just sit in the dark and wonder if it’s time

Do I throw out everything we built or keep it?

I’m getting tired even for a phoenix

Always rising from the ashes

Mending all her gashes

You might just have dealt the final blow

Stop, you’re losing me

Stop, you’re losing me

Stop, you’re losing me

I can’t find a pulse

My heart won’t start anymore for you

‘Cause you’re losing me

Every mornin’, I glared at you with storms in my eyes

How can you say that you love someone you can’t tell is dying?

I sent you signals and bit my nails down to the quick

My face was gray, but you wouldn’t admit that we were sick

And the air is thick with loss and indecision

I know my pain is such an imposition

Now, you’re running down the hallway

And you know what they all say

“You don’t know what you got until it’s gone”

Stop, you’re losing me

Stop, you’re losing me

Stop, you’re losing me

I can’t find a pulse

My heart won’t start anymore for you

‘Cause you’re losing me

‘Cause you’re losing me

Stop (Stop) ‘cause you’re losing me

My heart won’t start anymore

(Stop ‘cause you’re losing me)

My heart won’t start anymore

(Stop ‘cause you’re losing me)

How long could we be a sad song

‘Til we were too far gone to bring back to life?

I gave you all my best me’s, my endless empathy

And all I did was bleed as I tried to be the bravest soldier

Fighting in only your army, frontlines, don’t you ignore me

I’m the best thing at this party

(You’re losing me)

And I wouldn’t marry me either

A pathological people pleaser

Who only wanted you to see her

And I’m fading, thinking

“Do something, babe, say something” (Say something)

“Lose something, babe, risk something” (You’re losing me)

“Choose something, babe, I got nothing” (I got nothing)

“To believe, unless you’re choosing me”

You’re losing me

Stop (Stop, stop), you’re losing me

Stop (Stop, stop), you’re losing me

I can’t find a pulse

My heart won’t start anymore

This article was originally published on TODAY.com