Nick Carter is singing about his feelings, and his family, in his new song. Nick’s new single, “Hurts to Love You”, provides an emotional and heart-felt look at his complicated relationship with his late brother, Aaron Carter, who passed away in November of 2022.
For those that know Nick and the Carter family’s history, it’s not a far reach to consider whether this song is actually about more than just Nick’s relationship with Aaron, but his family as a whole, given their complicated past.
In this beautfiul ballad, penned by Nick himself, he sings about memories of his earlier years and experiences he has had, alluding to the good, while calling out the bad.
Nick mentions the many “nightmares” that are difficult to relive, but that he is unable to forget. He is no doubt referring to the rocky childhood that he and his siblings experienced together growing up in a dysfunctional household. The lyrics speak to the “wars” that they went through together, and the fact that no one else would understand those experiences or the feelings attached to what they went through but the other Carter kids. Nick has talked openly about the impact these times have had on him and his life. Having those shared memories with someone, in this case, Nick’s brother and 3 sisters, unites them in a way that cannot be broken, no matter the circumstances.
Although that emotional bond will forever be unbreakable, maintaining relationships with certain members of the family can be extremely complex, especially in the face of ongoing challenges and toxic interactions.
It is no secret that Aaron, and other members of the Carter clan, have experienced addiction and mental illness. Thankfully, Nick, along with a few members of the family, have found ways to thrive.
Unfortunately, that has not been the story for all of them. Aaron’s family worked tirelessly to help him through his challenges, sharing their concern for his behavior and actions, willing him to seek the help he needed to get better. Sadly, he was unable to escape those demons.
For years, Nick made attempts to preserve relationships within his family, seemingly often at the expense of his own health and happiness. This song speaks to that deep-seeded emotion, that drive to keep that contact regardless of the cost, and that inability to disconnect with someone, despite the pain and harm that may have been caused by or within the relationship.
Nick’s lyrics shine light on that unwavering love and positive regard for those in our lives, even when it may no longer be healthy for us to continue to engage in an active relationship with them. It is clear how difficult it was for Nick to choose his own health over these relationships. His lyrics and his story emulate that paradox of emotions from wanting to pull your loved ones out of that dark hole, whatever the cause, to realizing that you’ve done all you can in those moments to help them. The despair and torment of wanting nothing more than to ‘fix’ what’s broken with a loved one, but finding yourself unable to get there. The anguish is present in even just the title of the song.
The lyrics “Always hoped your tomorrows would be better than the days before; I hoped you’d find your road to follow to a place you were happy in this world” speak so perfectly to that internal need for us to see our loved ones be successful in life. Our desire for them to be healthy and happy, always winning out over any hurt or upset that may also be present. That loving someone can cause so much hurt is such a contradiction, and Nick demonstrates that in his words.
Despite the challenges Nick has faced with his family, his message is clear: the unconditional love he has for his brother (and others in his family) is stronger than any pain that may have come with it. There will always be that hope and prayer for their health and happiness. There will always be that sadness over lost times. And now, a relief that some may have finally found that peace he so desired for them.
In this new single, Nick captures the turmoil within his own head and heart beautifully. He allows himself to be vulnerable in sharing these thoughts and feelings and he portrays the emotions in a way that we can’t help but embody, allowing us to feel some of that pain with him.
As always, Nick’s brilliant vocals also bring added intense emotion to the words, further cementing the angst of loving someone even under near impossible conditions, and through trying times.
Check out the beautiful song on all streaming platforms, look out for the emotional video, coming soon, and stream the first live performance of “Hurts to Love You” at Nick’s sister Angel’s event, Songs for Tomorrow, benefitting On Our Sleeves, in Aaron’s honor.