Songwriters Holly Knight and Mike Chapman were gathered at Chapman's house to write music when Pat Benatar called and asked Chapman if he could write a song for her. He agreed–as long as Knight could co-write it. After Knight came up with some chords, Knight remembers that Chapman said "Let's write something really, really weird on top of it. That'll make it special." As an example, Chapman free associated the words "love is a battlefield." Originally written as a ballad, the two were shocked to learn Benatar had turned it into a rebellious rocker.