30 sep 2021

The Day Britney Spears Was Finally Released from Her Father’s Conservatorship

After 13 years of fighting for her freedom, a petition and two documentaries on the subject, a Los Angeles court decided on Wednesday, September 29, 2021, to remove Britney Spears from her father’s conservatorship. A big step for the pop star but also for all the women (in the music industry) who are too often treated as objects… While Britney Spears has just released her autobiography, The Woman In Me, let’s take a look back at this important moment in pop culture.

We didn’t dare to believe it anymore. 13 years after the beginning of Britney Spears‘ ordeal, the pop star no longer lives under the surreal yoke of her father, Jamie Spears. Indeed, on Wednesday, September 29, 2021, in Los Angeles, Judge Brenda Penny replaced the paternal guardianship that the star was subject to for her alleged “dementia” with a guardianship exercised by professionals chosen by the singer. During the hearing, Mathew Rosengart, Britney Spears’ lawyer, pleaded: “This man (Jamie Spears, editor’s note) has no place in his life one more day. He is to be suspended today, Britney Spears is pleading for it. It’s a very easy decision to make. My client will be extraordinarily distraught if Mr. Spears remains a conservative for another day.”  The judge heard his arguments and said: “This decision is in the best interest of the person under guardianship, which is my goal.”  The end of the star’s conservatorship officially ended at a subsequent hearing on November 12, 2021, in Los Angeles, when a crowd of fans came to support the star.


The end of Britney Spears’ conservatorship in 2021: a big step for the singer


This is a considerable step forward for
Britney Spears
, who despite her status as a huge global pop star found herself under the influence of a man. For years, the artist could do nothing without the approval of his father and the men who worked with him. Placed under conservatorship in 2008 after signs of mental disorder – Britney is bipolar – the star was not allowed to drive, have a child (she had to wear an IUD) or spend her money as she wished. A real nightmare that led the singer’s fans to launch the “Free Britney.   Disturbing details about this grotesque situation deemed abusive by the pop star had already been revealed by the moving documentary

Framing Britney Spears

(2021) produced by the New York Times. In particular, we learned that the father had placed surveillance cameras in his daughter’s room. Then a film released by Netflix in 2021,
Britney vs Spears
, revealed other particularly sad facts that would have taken place during Jamie Spears’ conservatorship.

Britney Spears denounces her abusive conservatorship in her book The Woman in Me


In the Netflix documentary
Britney vs Spears
, it was about from permission the singer had to get to drive a golf cart in her neighborhood or money she had to ask to buy books for her children. Kept silent and “drugged” by drugs, Britney Spears would also not have been allowed to speak on television about her divorce from Kevin Federline. Meanwhile, explains the Netflix documentary, the entourage of the singer’s father pocketed the dollars generated by the singer’s music… In the star’s autobiography, The Woman in Me (The woman in me), released this month by JC Lattès (in France), Britney Spears looks back at other details of her conservatorship and the harmful role her father played in her life. “It’s only money that matters to him,” writes the singer (…) An alcoholic, who had gone bankrupt, whose career had ended in failure, and who had terrified me all my childhood.” She says that during her guardianship, she was forced to ingest medication. On the one hand, I was too sick to be able to pick up a boyfriend, but on the other hand, I was doing well enough to be on a sitcom episode, on morning shows, and singing in front of thousands of people in a different corner of the world every week.” In a poignant passage, the pop star explains that she accepted this sad reality because she was trapped: “Because I played by the rules, I won the right to see my sons again (…) giving up my freedom in exchange for naps with my children was a deal that suited me.”


The end of Jamie Spears’ hold on his daughter is a strong symbol. Many pop stars of the 90s and 2000s, like Britney, were shaped and controlled by powerful men who remained in the shadows. Mariah Carey said in her autobiography released in September 2020 how her former husband, former Sony boss Tommy Mottola, had crossed the line with her, filming her 24 hours a day. Britney Spears, who at the age of 41, is finally free and has regained possession of her narration. An excellent one that should give wings to many other victims, famous or anonymous, who suffer from toxic domination.


Britney vs Spears (2021) by Erin Lee Carr and Jenny Eliscu, available on Netflix. The Woman in Me by Britney Spears, available from JC Lattès in France.