Abuse Hides in the Dark. Turn on Your Light.

The Rolling Stones Are Co-Dependent

Actually, whoever wrote The Beast of Burden sounds co-dependent to me. Here’s my interpretation of this fabulous song.

This guy says he’ll never be her “beast of burden”, meaning to me that he’s not going to carry her load for her – he’s his own man with his own burdens. All he wants is for her to make love to him. Based on the music and the “feel” of the song, I think it’s more than sex he’s talking about. (Maybe not, he is a “rolling stone.”) I think he wants her to love him, period. The focus on making love may be a rock ‘n roll by-product.

Right after he tells her his feet are hurting from his own burden, he launches into asking her if he’s hard, rough, and rich enough for her. Why? Because co-dependents are always wanting to be what we think our lovers want us to be.

Not rough enough? Okay, I can change that. Not rich enough? Okay, I can change that too.

It may be better if I interpreted the lyrics my way. Much less poetic, much wordier, but here they are. (Lyrics by the Rolling Stones are italicized, my interpretation is not. As if you wouldn’t know.)

Beast of Burden by The Rolling Stones

I’ll never be your beast of burden
My back is broad, but it’s a hurting
All I want is for you to make love to me
I’ll never be your beast of burden
I’ve walked for miles, my feet are hurting
All I want is for you to make love to me

[I’m not here to carry your load. My own cross is heavy enough. All I ask is that you love me and I’ll love you.]

Am I hard enough, Am I rough enough
Am I rich enough, I’m not to blind to see

[But I can tell that you don’t like me how I am. I don’t know if I need to be tougher, richer, or something else, but I know you don’t think I am good enough for you. I’ll do whatever it takes to make you love me.]

I’ll never be your beast of burden
So let’s go home and draw the curtains
Music on the radio
Come on baby make sweet love to me

[Just a reminder, I want to be here for you, but not in the way you SAY you want me to be here. I’m not going to carry your cross, I don’t even want to hear about it. Instead, I’m going to do what I think you REALLY want from me…I’m creating an illusion of me an you together in our home. I’ve put on the radio to create the mood I think you want. I’ve put on the loving show I think you want from me. If you’ll only make love to me, then I’ll feel like I’ve done something right.]

…filler lyrics and rockin’ solo…

I’ll tell ya
You can put me out…on the street
You can put me out…with no shoes on my feet
But you can put me out, put me out, put me out of misery

[You can treat me badly, you can treat me unfairly. You can do anything you want to me because you’re the only one who can put me out of misery. I need you to love me how I think you should love me, and I’m willing to stick around until you change and love me the way I think you really want to love me. No matter how much it hurts, no matter how much I ache.]

All your sickness, I can suck it up
Throw it all at me, I can shrug it off
There’s one thing baby, that I don’t understand
You keep on telling me, I ain’t your kind of man

[Well fine then. I’ll do it, whatever it is. Give me your burden, give me your crap. I’ll be your damn beast of burden on top of everything else I think you want. Dammit, this is hard. I’ve given up myself for you AND taken on the added responsibility of your burdens. Whatever. And why do you keep saying we’re not right for one another? How can I not be right for you, after all I’ve done? Good god, you’re confusing!]

Ain’t I rough enough
Ain’t I tough enough
Ain’t I rich enough, in love enough
Ooh, ooh, please

[Let’s try this again? What am I that you don’t like? I can change it. Please don’t leave me, I wouldn’t know who I was if you weren’t here to tell me what I am not. I want to be what you want me to be. Forget what I said before…I’m not mad. I’m sorry. Let’s try it again.]

I’ll never be your beast of burden
I’ve walked for miles and my feet are hurtin
All I want is you to make love to me

I don’t need no beast of burden
I need no fussin
I need no nursin
Never, never, never, never, never, never, never be

[Hey. I’m not gonna carry your cross, too! Hey! Just love me, will you? No, I won’t be here for you in the way you say you want me to be here for you. What’s your problem? How am I high-maintenance?! You don’t have to apologize, my feelings aren’t hurt. I’ll never, never, never, never, never, never, never be … ME.]