Achey Breaky Heart – A Psychoanalysis
By: David McGhee
“You can tell the world
You never was my girl”
These here are lyrics of a most complex nature, showing off the linguistic capabilities of a one, Mr. Billy Ray Cyrus. First off, there is the underlying aggression for his former lover. Second, he is accepting the fact that she has broken off the relationship and he understands if she was to sink to the childish level of denying her relationship to the subject. He has come to terms it seems but he also hints at the fact that he still wishes her well. Perhaps he hasn't gotten over her completely? Oh thine bard, whilst your secrets unravel as this musical sonnet unfolds?
“You can burn my clothes when I'm gone”
If given his rustic country boy flavor to the idea that he may have grown up having great responsibilities. One milestone in life that people sometimes forget once they accrue age is that taking on the responsibility to handle fire on your own is a big thing to most kids. The first time you light something on fire, a primal self comes about via our collective unconscious, which comes to say as to why Mr. Cyrus has a preoccupation with fire. He is indeed the very specimen of a man. Tall with broad shoulders. Has a deep baritone vocal range and without the mullet, he isn't that bad looking. The kind of man who could pick up any woman he wanted at his local musical venue / bar establishment, or “Honky Tonk.” It is no surprise that he shows interest in his girlfriend setting his clothes aflame. He is the very primordial Neanderthal in all us males. This, I believe, is why he suggested her to do such an action. A small minority of fetishists do however “get off” on seeing things burn. Perhaps he finds sexual gratification in it?
“Or you can tell you friends
Just what a fool I've been
And laugh and joke about me on the phone”
Subject shows signs of paranoia. Perhaps paranoid schizophrenic? This along with the previous interest in burning his possessions strongly suggests that this may be an avenue worth pursuing. He appears to believe that the woman (or man) in question has enough interest in defacing his name that he just out right lets it be known that if she (or he) is going to do it then she (or he) has his blessing.
I'm sure many people have laughed and joked about Mr. Cyrus on the phone but as to whether or not the woman in question has ever done it is not certain to this author. Upon research he has yet to become violent to a woman when looking up his personal statuses on Google, Wikipedia and other reliable world wide web search engines.
There is also a bit of sarcasm to these lyrics. Which may indicate intelligence on Mr. Rays part. Fascinating.
My final analysis on these lines proves to me that Mr. Cyrus has histrionic personality disorder, seeing as he assumes that the goings on of his former mate concern him in an all encompassing manner.
“You can tell my arms go back to the farm
You can tell my feet to hit the floor”
Apparently he suffers from a suggestible psychosis where all one has to do to obtain something from the multiplatinum country artist is just to ask. His mind is weak and has no conscious control to override such demands as telling his arms to go back to the farm. From where his arms surely must have come from. Sort of a black market with limbs. Has Mr. Cyrus discovered the secret to limb extraction and reattachment? There is no evidence that he has been educated on such matters. So we are safe to assume that he has found an outside source for such surgical mastery.
“Or you can tell my lips to tell my finger tips
They won't be reaching out for you no more”
This is an example of the mental illness apperceptive visual agnosia. Where inanimate objects are sometimes given more credence to motion and intelligence than one would normally give. He has to tell his fingers not to engage in the outreach of the his love interest. He believes he only has the power to do so if he actually vocalizes his request. To him, his fingertips have ears in which to hear and obey commands. This is a sign derealization, where the real world is filtered through a psychosis where many thing such as inanimate body parts have a consciousness and can act upon command.
“But don't tell my heart
My achey breaky heart
I just don't think he'd understand”
As many men personify their penises, Mr. Ray Cyrus has apparently personified his heart. As to what such a name could be is anybodies guess. The fact that he embodied it with a male gender suggests a misogynistic view on women. Or it could be that he being a male, assumes that other parts of his body have gender running more toward the “Y” chromosome. But surely from previous evidence it is in this author's opinion that he sees women as proprietors of the fall of masculinity.
“And if you tell my heart
My achey breaky heart
He might blow up and kill this man”
Finally we get to the heart of the matter, to borrow a phrase from the popular lexicon of modern clichés. He has identified another male in which to suffer the brunt of his angst of being dumped. This is what us psychologists call “Transference.” Transference is where rage and or affectionate feelings are transferred from the one whom is the instigator of such feelings and puts it onto another human or inanimate object. He transfers his aggression out on an unsuspecting man and proves that his condition is one in which is of the more worrisome variety.
Many unmedicated Paranoid Schizophrenics have the capability to take a man's entrails and wrap them around his waist. Not that many do this however. It is supposed that many normal men have this capability. But I'd like to digress and say that Mr. Cyrus can be a frightening creature when he wants to be. We all have this inner aggression as males that cannot be satisfied with mental processing strategies. It is in this professionals opinion that he take up knitting.
“You can tell your ma
I moved to Arkansas”
Is this a command or is he conceding again? Let's prepare for both scenarios shall we?
· If he was telling her to relay this information then he would in fact be demonstrating histrionic personality disorder. A disease where the subject is infatuated with one's self and cannot bear the sting of rejection. Which brings me to the second point.
· If he was indeed giving her the okay to do what she was already going to do then that further enforces the histrionic personality type. He feels that he has ultimate say in other people's actions, here demonstrated is him commanding his former lover to relay false information to her mother. Perhaps he owes her money and she is doing her a favor at not telling her his whereabouts?
“You can tell your dog to bite my leg”
By allowing her dog to bite to his leg by her dog probably is him filling the role of the apologetic boyfriend. By being bitten, he hopes, presumably, that he is showing retribution to her. But under normal circumstances and with typical personality types, he is only showing his ability to feed into his masochistic tendencies, normally found in fifteen year old female cutters.
“Or you can tell your brother Cliff
Who's fist can can tell my lip
He never really liked me anyway”
Subject seems to have quite an imagination. It is not known at this current time whether or not said brother “Cliff” indeed wants to let his fist do the talking. Of course we went over the reasons for him to feel as if such an inanimate object is capable of conversing with Mr. Cyrus.
“Or you can tell your Aunt Louise
Tell anything you please”
With this he gives his permission to her to completely fabricate a story as to why they have separated. One could only assume it involves Jedi knights and Playdough.
“Myself already knows I'm not okay”
He is talking both in first person and third person at the same time here. That to me indicates a strong likelihood of a disassociative disorder, in which a man or woman is disassociated from him or herself to the degree where they see themselves not as an autonomous thinking creature, but a far off object or animal in which they have no control over.
“Or you can tell my eyes
To watch out for my mind
It might be walking out on me today”
Again, he personifies a body part to the point where he does not recognize them as his own. Whereas typical human beings feel as a whole it appears that Mr. Cyrus sees each individual part of his body as having a consciousness of its own. Again we see signs of Visual Agnosia of the apperceptive variety. In where the subject does not recognize the body part as one of his own, in this sense, so he assumes that it has a will and consciousness. Some sufferers even hear said article vocalize a response. Does the subject hear his eyes agreeing with him? Such is mental illness...
“Don't tell my heart
My achey breaky heart
Don't tell my heart
My achey breaky heart
Don't tell my heart
My achey breaky heart”
This repetition shows signs of either a slight autism on his part or an undiagnosed case of mild obessive compulsive disorder. Subject feels the need to repeat himself ad nauseum to the point of irritating listeners. While this researcher can personally admit to the catchiness of the lines, it is more likely designed in nature to appeal to listeners of a certain capacity. It is certain that the twenty million plus human beings who had purchased this album are of the atypical typical type. Modestly intelligent people who have no impulse control, hence my theory on as to why this album was so successful.
Upon many listens, the novelty of the lyrics wear off, as does the melody. It is that rare diddy that can eat at your brain like a carnivorous ear wig*. But as most things of this caliber do, has gone from the public consciousness off to greener pastures of one hit wonderdome. Forever frozen in a list on a VH1 countdown show.
*Carnivorous ear wigs in actuality, do not consume the brain matter of humans. There are too many fail safes keeping outside articles of mass from getting inside the cranial cavity.