The lead single from Adele’s album 30, Easy On Me, was released in October 2021. As with all of her greatest hits, Adele uses the song to describe her melancholy feelings. And if in the past these themes were frequently connected to the sufferings of love, Adele’s personal circumstances has significantly changed this time around: in 2019, she and her husband Simon Konecki divorced. Adele is a woman in her 30s who is going through a divorce and is the mother of a 9-year-old boy named Angelo who has many concerns about his parents’ divorce.
In an effort to explain why her parents divorced and to convey Adele’s contradictory feelings about the whole thing, Easy On Me is therefore an open letter to her son.
There ain’t no gold in this river
That I’ve been washin’ my hands in forever
I know there is hope in these waters
But I can’t bring myself to swim
When I am drowning in this silence
Baby, let me in
The first words of the song depict Adele’s perspective on her broken relationship with her ex-husband as she tries to explain it to her son. Although there was some optimism for the partnership, it was tough to endure the quiet. These contrasting feelings reflect the effort the couple put into making their separation decision.
Adele’s son is asked by her to be kind to her and to be patient with her in the midst of unpleasant feelings. With inquiries for clarification and the subliminal reproaches that every separated parent notices in their children’s gaze.
Go easy on me, baby
I was still a child
Didn’t get the chance to
Feel the world around me
I had no time to choose what I chose to do
So go easy on me
The song’s second section highlights Adele’s significant attempts to maintain the status quo:
There ain’t no room for things to change
When we are both so deeply stuck in our ways
You can’t deny how hard I have tried
I changed who I was to put you both first
But now I give up
Therefore, Adele’s song Easy On Me, while still painful, is related to a very different position in her life this time. And directed to a component of her life that is incredibly important to her and dear to her heart: her own child, who shares her suffering.