Chattel of Love

I’m writing for the Girl Effect. Find out how you can, too.

My intention is to post a response to The Girl Effect all week. The first writing is in response to Kidan’s story (featured in the video below). Kidan is 13 years old and living in poverty in Ethiopa. Kidan’s eyes light up when she talks about wanting to become a doctor.

When I was 13, I loved the song Chapel of Love. I imagined myself singing this song in an early 60s wedding dress with my hair up in a bleached blond bouffant and three of my best girlfriends in pale yellow singing backups. I never actually imagined the groom, just the singing and the glamour with my girlfriends.

Chattel of Love

Going to the chapel and
we’re gonna get married
Going to the chapel of love
yeah, yeah yeah

We’re gonna get married
You sweet little thing
Yeah, yeah, yeah
Gonna kiss your lips

Pretty little thing
Let go of your dream
Your sweet honey lips
All mine, all mine

Throw out your dream
and don’t call your mama
You’re already mine
Go ask your papa

Just look at your mama
She won’t be hungry
Last look at your papa
Your sister, your family

They’re all so hungry
And you have to love me
Got a brother for your sister
Little girl, little girly

You listen to me
We’re gonna get married
Little girl, little girly
We’re going to the chapel

Girl Facts
One girl in seven in developing countries marries before age 15.
(Population Council, “Transitions to Adulthood: Child Marriage/Married Adolescents,”
http://www.popcouncil.org/ta/mar.html [updated May 13, 2008].)

38 percent marry before age 18.
(Cynthia B. Lloyd, ed., Growing Up Global: The Changing Transitions to Adulthood in Developing
Countries [Washington, D.C.: National Academies Press, 2005].)

One-quarter to one-half of girls in developing countries become mothers before age 18; 14 million girls aged 15 to 19 give birth in developing countries each year.
(United Nations Population Fund, State of World Population 2005, http://www.unfpa.org/swp/2005.)

Learn more about The Girl Effect.

* excerpt from Chapel of Love – song written by Jeff Barry, Ellie Greenwich and Phil Spector