Jim Adams takes a cue from Fandango this week and has a provocative theme for Song Lyric Sunday ~ sex, doing it or discussing it. As befits my status of an all talk, no action kinda gal, I’m going with sex chat, specifically “Love Child.” This 1968 Diana Ross & the Supremes’ hit was a departure for the group. Their previous hits were peppy love songs, but “Love Child” presents a message. It’s from the point of view of a woman who is being pressured to have premarital sex. She desires her man, but she herself was a “love child,” born outside of wedlock, and consequently grew up poor and feeling judged. She refuses to subject a possible baby to that fate and she tells her man that “this love we’re contemplating is worth the pain of waiting.”
Back then and even now birth control does not always work perfectly and some women wouldn’t consider an abortion ~ this was pre RvW (and pre birth control pill), and we may be there again soon. Already some places in the US are de facto wastelands of choice, which I’m sure makes some readers happy, but I think it’s terrible not to have the choice to terminate, at least early on. Contrary to what some people believe, termination is often a difficult decision and not one made only by young, single, irresponsible girls. Older women have abortions too. Married women have them. So do moms who are overwhelmed with their current lives. It’s no one else’s business! Anti-choicers forget that there is always a man involved in the pregnancy situation, but it’s the woman who has to bear all the physical responsibility, not to mention the financial one if he disappears.
This is one issue I have felt strongly about for decades, and I’m not going to host arguments in the comments. This is my opinion and if yours differs, post it on your own blog. Kudos to the women marching this weekend for our disappearing rights!
In any case, we don’t know the outcome of the “Love Child” story. We hear Diana Ross forcefully state her convictions, but does the man end up agreeing to wait until marriage, or will he leave her for someone more adventurous? Does she end up giving in to the pressure for sex, as women have done throughout history? Perhaps they simply run off and get married… maybe they will end up living happily ever after. We have to imagine how the story ends. But we don’t have to imagine how well the song did on the charts. It knocked “Hey Jude” from the No. 1 position that song had held for 9 weeks on Billboard’s Hot 100, and “Love Child” sold 500,000 copies in its first week and 2 million by year’s end.
Writing credit goes to R. Dean Taylor, Frank Wilson, Pam Sawyer, and Deke Richards. Bit of trivia ~ the “Supremes” did not actually sing background vocals on “Love Child;” background vocals were provided by The Andantes, a Motown female session group. This was the case for most of “Diana Ross & the Supremes” singles. [Wikipedia]
Image from Pexels.
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