Meaning of The Weeknd's Song "Privilege"

7 Meanings of 🪂 Parachute Emoji

The Weeknd's 2018 EP "My Dear Melancholy" has one of his most famous songs "Call Out My Name" as well as other recognizable songs such as "Try Me" and Wasted Times". However one of the lesser discussed songs on the EP is the outro track "Privilege" which is one of his most meaningful songs to date. This song is a harsh look at what a breakup does to a person, how their feelings about their partner change, and how they cope with the difficulties that come along with it.

The EP "My Dear Melancholy" was released six months after the breakup of The Weeknd and Selena Gomez who dated for around ten months before Gomez broke up with him to rekindle a relationship with ex-boyfriend Justin Bieber. The EP has only six songs and apparently took only two and a half weeks to write, record and release. The song "Privilege" starts with the lyrics "Enjoy your privileged life, cause I'm not gonna hold you through the night." a clear jab at his famous and privileged ex-girlfriend. The pre-chorus to the song goes "And I don't want to hear that you're suffering, You are suffering no more, 'Cause I held you down when you were suffering, You were suffering." This references Gomez's very public and difficult battle with Lupus. 2017, the year Gomez and The Weeknd were together, was a particularly rough year for Gomez regarding her disease, she ended up having to get a kidney transplant. It was well documented while they were in their relationship that The Weeknd was very supportive of her and always worked to make sure her needs were met. From the same EP the song "Call Out My Name" also mentions previous rough times the couple had gone through. Gomez also struggles with anxiety and depression, she completed a two-week treatment program for her mental health in early 2018. Now that Gomez and The Weeknd are no longer dating he makes it clear that he was there for her while she was suffering but doesn't want to hear about it anymore. Another reference to Gomez comes in the bridge of the song when he says "They said our love was just a game, I don't care what they say". Gomez and The Weeknd were accused of faking their relationship after several media outlets decided that most of the pictures of them kissing or showing each other affection looked staged.

During the chorus, he makes a reference to the hit movie The Matrix with the lyrics "But I got two red pills to take the blues away." This is a reference to The Matrix's iconic red and blue pills, the red pill making you face reality and the blue pill is the return to blissful ignorance. The Matrix is all about facing the reality before you or choosing to live in ignorance hence why The Weeknd incorporates the reference as he's having trouble facing reality. However, the more literal translation of these lyrics could be a reference to the prescription drug Oxycotin which is a painkiller that comes in the form of red pills. He also talks about other forms of self-medicating in the song saying "And I'ma f--k the pain away and I know I'll be okay" an obvious reference to using sex to numb the pain of his breakup and eventually get over his ex. He also writes "But I'ma drink the pain away, I'll be back to my old ways." The Weeknd has a very public history of substance abuse issues, he has given interviews about the topic and the topic is one of the main focuses of his earlier albums, By saying he would drink the pain away, it would send him down his old path of substance abuse issues.

The song "Privilege" ends with the words "I don't want to hear that no more, no more. No more, no more. I don't want to hear that no more" which is thought to be another reference to the struggles Gomez faces. Now that he isn't with her anymore, he wants to be free of her problems. The Weeknd ending his song and the EP with the words " I don't want to hear that no more" could be a reference to his relationship in general. He uses this EP as an outlet to express his feelings about the pain he felt following his breakup and he is simply done talking about it. In an interview with Elle Magazine, he described the EP as "a cathartic piece of art" and remarked that the length of the EP was so short because "that's all [he] had to say on the situation."