Can Britney Spears ever REALLY be free?

As Jamie Spears agrees to release his daughter Britney from her ‘abusive’ conservatorship, experts warn it may be a long and complex road to recovery for the star…

britney spears

by Daisy McLure |

In a shock move, Jamie Spears last week filed a petition to end his daughter’s conservatorship after 13 years in control of her life, career and £45million fortune.

In court documents, Jamie’s legal team wrote, “If Ms Spears wants to terminate the conservatorship and believes that she can handle her own life, Mr Spears believes that she should get that chance. As Mr Spears has said again and again, all he wants is what is best for his daughter.”

It comes three months after Britney, 39, spoke out in court for the first time against the controversial guardianship, describing it as “abusive”. The court-order has seen her deprived of almost every life choice – from buying a coffee and going out unsupervised, to being able to marry and have a baby. She argued to have her dad – who she said she’s “scared of” – removed as guardian, with the intention of then removing the court order permanently.

The judge, who will have the final say on whether to terminate the conservatorship, which could happen at the next hearing scheduled for 29 September, looks set to green light Britney’s bid for freedom, but experts tell Closer her path to “normality” will not be easy...

Pop guru: ‘She’s vulnerable to the money - hungry industry’

By the time her father was granted a conservatorship by the courts in 2008, Britney had released six albums, and later held a four-year Las Vegas residency between 2013 and 2017 – making her millions. But in 2018, she refused to perform any longer while under the conservatorship. In her court statement, Britney told a judge that she’d been forced into performing even when sick and faced threats she would be sued if she didn’t.

It has emerged that Jamie has earned £3.6million as a “salary” for being Britney’s conservator, as well as taking a percentage of all of her ticket sales and merchandise.

While fans hope she’ll make a return to her career and sit down for a tell-all interview with Oprah, pop culture expert Nick Ede believes Britney will have to be cautious.

“There’s no doubt Britney will have a queue of people wanting to make her music and take her millions,” says Nick. “LA, and the showbiz industry, can be money-hungry, and the danger for Britney is that, while she’s shown how strong she is, she’s still very vulnerable.

“The most important thing for her is to take some time out and take stock – she’ll be pulled in so many directions and it will be a lot for her to take in. A celebrity mentor, who has nothing to gain from her, would be hugely beneficial. Someone like her friend Paris Hilton – who has been a great support to her, and who is very grounded and has totally reinvented herself – would be perfect.”

Therapist: ‘The emotional scars will stay with her forever’

After 13 years of silence, Britney spoke out against her ordeal for the first time in court in June, and her revelations sent shockwaves across the world.

Comparing her conservatorship to “sex trafficking”, she accused her guardians, including dad Jamie, of taking control of her day-to-day decisions, which included everything from painting her cupboards to shopping for basics, and said they would occasionally strip her of her possessions, including her phone, cash and passport.

And after so many years of being in a “psychological prison”, Closer’s psychological therapist Emma Kenny warns Britney will be vulnerable.

britney spears
The singer performing in 2017 ©Getty Images

Emma says, “She hasn’t been able to do anything for herself for a very long time, so it could be difficult for her to adapt to a new normal.

“Going from having no power, to making all her decisions – even small choices like changing her hairstyle or visiting friends – is going to be overwhelming.

“Britney is also likely to be suffering post-traumatic stress disorder – she will never be completely free because she will bear emotional scars for life.

“Unless she has a highly supportive network around her, she could invest in the wrong people. Her first steps to protect herself would be to surround herself with a supportive team and start to process the years of trauma.”

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Relationship expert: ‘Marriage and a baby may lead her to lose control again’

Last week, Britney’s boyfriend of five years, Sam Asghari, was spotted browsing engagement rings in Beverly Hills – just months after Britney said in her court statement that she wants to marry him.

She has also revealed she hopes for a baby with Sam, 28 – but had been banned from having her IUD (contraceptive coil) removed. And insiders say Britney – who is mum to Sean-Preston, 15, and Jayden-James, 14, with her ex-husband Kevin Federline, and currently has partial custody of them – is desperate to start a family as soon as possible as she turns 40 in December.

But relationship expert Alex Mellor-Brook tells Closer he would advise against going full-throttle with marriage plans as her life as she knows it is about to change so dramatically.

Alex explains, “Britney needs stability and cohesiveness in her life – and she seems to get that from Sam. But her life is about to change again, and she needs time to explore these changes and discover who the ‘new Britney’ is. Being in a marriage too quickly may even lead Britney to feeling a loss of control again.

“While it’s understandable that she’s in a rush for a baby as she turns 40, it would be advisable to still have a good amount of time together with Sam first to settle into their new life, share more experiences together, and rediscover what she is all about. I’m sure those close to Britney would urge her to get a prenup, too, to safeguard her fortune.”

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