Hell Is For Children

Album: Crimes Of Passion (1980)
Play Video
  • They cry in the dark
    So you can't see their tears
    They hide in the light
    So you can't see their fears
    Forgive and forget
    All the while
    Love and pain become one and the same
    In the eyes of a wounded child

    Because hell, hell is for children
    And you know that their little lives can become such a mess
    Hell, hell is for children
    And you shouldn't have to pay for your love
    With your bones and your flesh

    It's all so confusing this brutal abusing
    They blacken your eyes and then apologize
    Be daddy's good girl, and don't tell mommy a thing
    Be a good little boy, and you'll get a new toy
    Tell grandma you fell from the swing

    Because hell, hell is for children
    And you know that their little lives can become such a mess
    Hell, hell is for children
    And you shouldn't have to pay for your love
    With your bones and your flesh

    No, hell is for children

    Hell, hell is for hell
    Hell is for hell
    Hell is for children

    Hell, hell is for hell
    Hell is for hell
    Hell is for children

    Hell, hell is for hell
    Hell is for hell
    Hell is for children

    Hell is for children
    Hell is for children Writer/s: NEIL GIRALDO, PATRICIA BENATAR, ROGER CAPPS
    Publisher: BMG Rights Management
    Lyrics licensed and provided by LyricFind

Comments: 16

  • Gary Samuel Besner from Casa Grande, ArizonaI was a just becoming a teenager when Crimes of Passion was released and I was obsessed with this song; I would literally play over and over - so much so that I am surprised that my mother didn't throw my stereo out the window. I wasn't ever abused, and didn't know anyone who was, but every time that I heard the lyrics " Be a good little boy, and you'll get a new toy - tell Grandma you feel off the swing", it had an incredible emotional effect on me, and the lyrics are so strong and visually descriptive, that even at 15 years old, I was able to feel a profound and deep emotional sorrow and sadness of the thought of any child being abused, probably have been exposed to the subject matter on television shows and after school movies I would often watch. And today as an adult, I think I remember a public service ad also on television where the song was used to expose the sadistic horrors that our animal companions often endure - even now the images of starving and beaten dogs and cats are flashing through my mind. In my opinion "Hell is For Children", like Elton John's song "Indian Sunset" document and bring to light tragic truths about our world's horrible violence, often inexcusable dismissal and neglect of the undeniable fact that crime, hatred, disease, mental illness, abuse, waste, insanity, and pointless and foolish wars are blatant indications that our governments, systems, priorities, values, greed. and juvenile and often senseless ambitions are decaying the planet, our balance and wellness and the future of tomorrows generations. To anyone in the future reading this and in my opinion watching us undetected, you may look back and even be confused by the fact that many of these very serious, prophetic and important songs thrill and excite us as listeners, possibly thinking that we are cold heartless monsters, and that the artists who wrote them were profiting on issues that should have been handled with extreme sensitivity, but nothing is further from the truth - songwriters like Pat Benatar often choose controversial, violent and grotesque human issues, and marry them to their powerful voices and music with the hope that thier life's works will reach the very depths of the hearts, minds and souls of their listeners - whom in turn may be choose purposes that inspire great change, and use their love, compassion and understanding to repair the wrongs of yesterday, and bring love, peace, security and freedom from everyone and everything that has been poisoned, murdered and raped by these pointless abuses. I often skipped classes in high school and should have read all of the classic books to enlighten and educate me on my journey of becoming a writer, but I didn't; however, I was raised on record albums and always made sure to not only listen to the music, but to read the liner notes and the lyrics, making Rock & Roll, Alternative, New Wave, Progressive Rock, Film Scores and Soundtracks my greatest teachers. "Hell is for Children" was one of those teachers, and songs that would send chills up and down my soul, and the tragic truth and pain of it's subject matter, I am certain was part of my hearts foundation, and taught me never to be afraid to hurt, and cry. If god/g-d exists, I often sense and feel something in our music, and so many talented artist works that exceeds explanation, and touches on our deepest and most beautiful pains. Thank you Pat Benatar, and your band for a song that I am sure has educated and elevated millions of young open minds. If you find what I wrote verbal diareah, bloated and too wordy - I implore you to listen to the song, and watch the Public Service announcements with abused children, adults, animals, people's, countries destroyed by war&violence, oceans, landscapes, etc., and I am hoping, that if you are a human being, or some form of intelligent life that your perspective and understanding will be forever changed. I am honestly only trying to share my deepest feelings, and the beautiful and innocent undertanding and feeling I, and most of have as children that somehow fades and diminishes as life, at least in my case, abuses us. GarySamuelBesner
  • Soal from CalifI dont believe her
  • Geoff from Brighton New Zealand Awesome song more people need to stand up
  • Mattshizzle from MattgoWhen I was little I thought she was evil saying hell was for kids to be in, but later knew what she meant.
  • Lilly from DelawareI lived this hell and this song for me at 61 years old continues to be an outlet for my pain.
  • Courtney from MichiganI believe and hope that Pat doesn't sing this song to be mean, It's just that she was against child abuse, right?
  • Sandy from Oxnard, CaThis song is like a great song. Oh and Joshua I 2nd your comment.
  • Dusty from St. Louis, MoLiquid Len does have a point. They do have similar ranges. But I don't think this sounds like a Rush song. Rush songs sound fuller. This song sounds like it has something missing. And another reason is that Rush are better musicians.
  • Pat from St. Paul, MnI find it ironic that after "Hit Me With Your Best Shot" was a big hit for Pat Benatar, her next hit was this song. Somehow the two songs have opposing messages, even if "Hit Me" was not meant literally.
  • Cyberpope from Richmond, CanadaThis song, with "Cat's in the Cradle" defined my constant-in-childhood feelings of emptiness and fear
  • James from Riverside, CaThe band Thrash Band Viking did a cover of this
  • Anne from Dodge City, KsYou are awesome in Boulder!! I am crying I am laughing so hard!!
  • Liquid Len from Ottawa, CanadaLike Rush? Um, no. But now that I think about it, Pat Benetar and Geddy Lee have similar ranges and styles. Imagine Pat singing 'Spirit of Radio' or Geddy singing 'Hit Me With Your Best Shot'. I kind of think Pat Benetar has a better voice (not as yelpy!), but Rush have the edge on songs.
  • I'm Awesome from Boulder, Cothis song got scary after i once saw my mom singing along to this....
  • Jim from Dayton, OhNo disrespect, but I have a real hard time drawing a correlation between "Hell Is For Children" and ANYTHING on "Permenant Waves" other than there were guitars, bass and drums used.
  • Joshua from Twin Cities, MnThis sounds almost like a Rush song. Except for the lyrics, it sounds like it would have been right at home on Rush's "Permanent Waves" album which came out the same year.
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Glen Ballard

Glen BallardSongwriter Interviews

Glen Ballard talks about co-writing and producing Alanis Morissette's Jagged Little Pill album, and his work with Dave Matthews, Aerosmith and Annie Lennox.

Rufus Wainwright

Rufus WainwrightSongwriter Interviews

Rufus Wainwright on "Hallelujah," his album Unfollow The Rules, and getting into his "lyric trance" on 12-hour walks.

Dave Alvin - "4th Of July"

Dave Alvin - "4th Of July"They're Playing My Song

When Dave recorded the first version of the song with his group the Blasters, producer Nick Lowe gave him some life-changing advice.

Songs in Famous Movie Scenes: '80s Edition

Songs in Famous Movie Scenes: '80s EditionMusic Quiz

You know the scenes - Tom Cruise in his own pants-off dance off, Molly Ringwald celebrating her birthday - but do you remember what song is playing?

Rupert Hine

Rupert HineSongwriter Interviews

Producer Rupert Hine talks about crafting hits for Tina Turner, Howard Jones and The Fixx.

U2 Lyrics

U2 LyricsMusic Quiz

How well do you know the lyrics of U2?