To this day, Britney Spears still wonders: “How the fuck did they get away with it?”
The pop star surprised fans by revealing harrowing details of her 13-year conservatorship on Sunday night, and it turns out it’s even darker than we could have imagined.
Taking to YouTube to release the 22-minute audio clip, Spears said she “woke up this morning and I realized there’s a lot going on in my head that I haven’t shared with anyone.” She said that while she has been offered big bucks to share her story through interviews with famous names like Oprah Winfrey, she decided to post the video “just to open myself to others and try to shed a light on if anyone out there has ever gone through hardships or whatever it is, just to put a light on it so that person doesn’t feel alone.” She then said: “I really know what that feels like.”
The video has now been set to private, while a tweet from Spears has also been deleted, but the clip, obtained by The Daily Beast, features Spears describing the events leading up to her being placed under the conservatorship through which her father, Jamie, and his team tightly controlled her life and her finances.
She said she had never shared her truth “because I’ve always been scared of the judgment and the embarrassment of the whole thing,” but added that “I do think I’m in a place now where I’m a little bit more confident that I can be willing to share openly my thoughts and what I’ve been through.”
The conservatorship, which began in February 2008, ultimately gave Jamie Spears control over his daughter’s life, career, and finances for 13 years. The arrangement was officially terminated by a Los Angeles Superior Court judge in November 2021.
The Beginning of the Conservatorship
Britney Spears recalls the beginning of her conservatorship, when she was 25. “I was extremely young. I remember a lot of my friends texting me and calling me, extremely close, and they wanted to see me. I honestly still to this day don’t know what really I did, but the punishment of my father… I wasn’t able to see anyone or anything. You have to imagine none of it made sense to me.”
Britney’s Family and Friends Held Her Down as a SWAT Team Arrived
“I literally spoke in a British accent to a doctor to prescribe my medication and three days later there was a SWAT team in my home, three helicopters,” Spears said.
“I remember my mom’s best friend, and my two girlfriends, we had a sleepover the night before. They held me down on a gurney. Again, none of it made sense. Literally the extent of my ‘madness’ was playing chase with paparazzi, which is still to this day one of the most fun things I ever did about being famous. I don’t know what was so harmful about that. I remember my mom was sitting on the couch, and she said, ‘We heard people are coming here today to talk to you. We should probably go to a hotel or something.’ I never really understood what she meant. I didn’t believe her. Like, is a lawyer coming here? Who is coming here? Four hours later, there were over 200 paparazzi outside my house videotaping me through a window of an ambulance, holding me down on a gurney. I know now it was all premeditated. A woman introduced the idea [of a conservatorship] to my dad, and my mom actually helped him follow through and made it all happen. It was all basically set up. There was no drugs in my system, no alcohol, nothing. It was pure abuse. And I haven’t even really shared half of it.”
Problems in Vegas
Spears spoke of the weeks after her hospitalization, when “completely traumatized out of my mind” by her experience, she was thrown straight back into work, first with an appearance on How I Met Your Mother and then back into the studio to record her Circus album.
“All I do remember is I had to do what I was told,” she said. “I was told I was fat every day, I had to go to the gym,” she recalls, saying she felt “so demoralized” and that “they made me feel like nothing. I went along with it because I was scared, and fearful… none of it made sense to me.”
It was in Vegas while doing her show that she began to question some of the rules she was under. “The dancers are playing and drinking and having fun at nights in Vegas and I couldn’t do any thing,” she said.
“I remember my performances, I know were horrible, like I even wore wigs and all the dancers were doing these nice, sexy, head flip turns and I had conditioner treatment in my hair and these little caps over my head. I was like a robot, honestly, I didn’t give a fuck anymore because I couldn’t go where I wanted to go, I couldn’t have the nannies I wanted to have, I couldn’t have cash, and it was just demoralizing.
The Spark Returns
Spears says it was during the recording of her last album, 2016’s Glory, that “I started to get a spark back.”
“I think producing and making music… I got the fire back in my eyes for some reason,” she said. She began to gain more confidence and said this was a turning point for her and her team.
“It was really tricky because I had to just play this role that everything was OK all the time and I had to go along with it because I knew they could hurt me.”
Things Begin to Unravel
It was during rehearsals for Spears new Vegas show, the eventually canceled Vegas residency Domination in 2019, when things began to seriously come apart. “I went to one of the rehearsals and I said no to a dance move,” she recalled. “I was like, ‘No, I don’t want to do this’ and I remember everything got really weird and quiet, and all the producers and directors went in the back room and spoke and that was it. I was like, ‘I don’t know what’s going on.’”
The next day, she said, she was told she had to be sent away to a facility. “I was supposed to say on my Instagram the reason why was because my dad is sick and I need treatment. I didn’t want to ever go there, I remember my dad calling me on the phone and I was crying, and I was like, ‘Why are you guys doing this?’
“I just remember him saying, ‘You have to listen to the doctors, the doctors are going to tell you what to do, I can’t help you now.’ And I remember his last words were, ‘Now you don’t have to go, but if you don’t go, we’re going to go to court and there will be a big trial and you’re going to lose, I have way more people on my side than you, you don’t even have a lawyer, so don’t even think about it.’” She said she reluctantly went, “scared out of my mind,” and that at that time, “I stopped believing in God.”
At the facility, Spears said she was monitored constantly and couldn’t even change her clothes without a person present. There was “no door, nothing, how did they get away with it and what the fuck did I do to deserve that? I couldn’t even smoke cigarettes. People on death row can smoke cigarettes,” she said.
She said despite being forced to go to AA meetings, “I actually enjoyed it because I thought the people were brilliant, they shared their stories just to share their story in a circle of women and men who just are trying to be better people and trying to touch other people.”
#FreeBritney Movement Changed Everything
Spears claimed the reason she was released from the mental facility was because the #FreeBritney movement began finding its voice and fans were questioning her situation.
The facility “had to let me go because the #FreeBritney campaign came out,” she said, noting that she watched the movement on morning television gain momentum.
“The whole thing that made it really confusing for me was these people on the street fighting for me but my sister and mother aren’t doing anything,” she said. “To me it was like they secretly honestly liked me being the bad one, like I was messed up and they kind of just liked it that way. Otherwise, why weren’t they at my doorstep saying, ‘Baby girl, get in the car, let’s go.’ I think that’s the main thing that hurt me, I couldn’t process how my family went along with it for so long, almost half a year. And their only response was ‘we didn’t know.’ I’m like, ‘I’m on the phone telling you right now, I’m here, please.”
After leaving the facility, Spears says her strength grew “because I didn’t reach out to my dad anymore.” A “wonderful friend” helped her get a lawyer, and the process to free Britney really began.
Britney Thought Her Family Was Trying to Kill Her
“They literally killed me, they threw me away, that’s what I felt, I felt my family threw me away,” she said. “I was a machine, I was a fucking machine, not even human almost, it was insane how hard I worked.
“They thought I needed them because they put me in an ignorant, scared state of mind to make me feel like I needed them. I didn’t play their game anymore.
“I do feel victimized after these experiences, and how can I mend this if I don’t talk about it?”
“I got on my knees every day and I prayed, I held on, like a needle and thread, to some sort of existence because they had made me feel like nothing for so long. I knew in the deepest, deepest part of my core, I knew I’d done nothing wrong and I didn’t deserve the way I’d been treated. I honestly deserve an award for acting like I was OK every day, I thought they were fucking trying to kill me.”
Spears said she was most angry at her mom “because I heard when reporters would call her at the time and ask questions of what was going on, she would go innocently hide in the house and she wouldn’t speak up, it was always like, ‘I just don’t want to say the wrong thing, we’re praying for her.’ I feel she could have gotten me a lawyer in literally two seconds. Every time I made contact with a firm, my phone was tapped and they would take my phone away from me.”
‘I Want to Spit in Their Fucking Faces’
Spears said that while she hasn’t spoken to her family, she has thought of what she might do the next time. “My heart would just want to stand up in my family’s faces and scream and cry and throw a tantrum… and might even spit in their fucking faces. Why? Because the pain my family gave me, sitting there all day and not being able to use my feet… as if I’m dead or I don’t exist, honestly makes me look up and say, ‘How the fuck did they get away with it? How is there a god? Is there a god?’ Not being able to stand up… I was scared, broken. I do feel victimized after these experiences, and how can I mend this if I don’t talk about it?”
Spears closed the video by saying she’s had “lots of offers” to share her story but that she’s not interested in the money or the fame.
“For me, it’s beyond a sit-down interview,” she said.
In a post on Twitter after the video was set to private and after her tweet to the video was deleted, the star wrote: “Life goes on.”
Source by www.thedailybeast.com