"These are stories without redemption, without a cheerful twist or upbeat perspective. If country music so often pulls from the blues’ signature blend of pathos and humor, 'For My Broken Heart' doesn’t shy from expressing heartfelt, deep sadness without an easy antidote. It’s most potent on the album’s closer, “If I Had Only Known” — a song so gutting McEntire has rarely performed it live. In the studio, she could barely get through it. The understandable emotion in her usually strong, unwavering voice is audible throughout; there are shakes that don’t sound intentional, words that trail off instead of being hit with her typical punch. It is a song seemingly written for the occasion, one that might have sounded maudlin without the simple arrangement and the raw emotion that Reba put into it."