From the recording The Single Girl

When a woman married, her legal status was subsumed in that of her husband, but at least she gained social standing, the achievement of what society called her highest aspiration. Although marriage was the goal of many a young girl, a bad marriage was often a jail sentence It wasn't easy to escape from an abusive husband for most of our history. Even if she could sue for divorce, she risked losing everything, since her husband's rights were paramount. He could dispose of his wife's property, take their children, and leave her destitute. The girl in this song is left longing for death, her only means of escape.