The song's concept is the marriage break-up of Mraz's parents when he was five years old. The Virginia singer-songwriter confessed on his record label's website: "I didn't want to share the lyrics, but I just let it rip and it wasn't until playback that I realized how important it was that I needed to write it."
This was written by Mraz, together with the album's producer Martin Terefe and songwriter/pianist Sasha Skarbek (who co-wrote James Blunt's "You're Beautiful
Mraz told The Daily Mail December 27, 2008: "The song pieces together some memories. I remember hearing all the arguments, but I also felt their love."
Mraz expanded on this song to The San Diego Union Tribune: "It's based on loose facts, meaning that I did my best to recall my family actually living together. And my few memories are hearing my family behind closed doors, watching my parents sort through a house that was trashed. We got burglarized – burgled? We got robbed and everything was all over the house. And I stood there in awe while my parents stood there arguing and going though everything. So when I wrote the song, I remembered what it was like. (One) line is from when my parents were busy not talking to each other. I could hide right down the middle (between them). I could tell my dad, 'I'm going to my mom's,' and tell her, 'I'm going to my dad's,' and then disappear for the weekend and learn (things) the hard way.
At same time, I had a great upbringing from two families. And the freedom I had, I'm grateful for. You can't live the rest of your life carrying a pain because your parents couldn't get along. I choose to spend my life crafting a joy."
Prior to singing this song during an episode of VH1 Storytellers broadcast on June 1, 2012, Mraz confessed that he'd never asked his mother her feelings about "Love For a Child" - so he called her a half-hour before coming on stage that night. He relayed her honest sentiments to the audience, "I try not to listen to that song very much. It's a beautiful song, but I just wish it was about somebody else."