Fallon of Cherish said on their MySpace site that this song, produced by Eric Hudson, delivered a story that flips tradition and puts men on the receiving end for a change. "Basically, you are telling your boyfriend that you were with his best friend before you two were together. But, you waited awhile to tell him because you did not know how. We thought it was a way to give guys a taste of their own medicine." Fallon added that the song is autobiographical.
The Prince-penned "Manic Monday" was the first song The Bangles heard coming from a car radio, but "Eternal Flame" is closest to Susanna's heart, perhaps because she sang it in "various states of undress."