Britney Spears is sharing more details about how her years living under a conservatorship robbed her of her independence.
The 41-year-old pop superstar admitted in a new excerpt from her upcoming memoir The Woman In Me that she felt like a ‘child-robot’ during the 13-year period after she was involuntarily placed under a conservatorship by a judge.
Her father, Jamie Spears, was initially a co-conservator after the arrangement started in 2008, with the attorney Andrew Wallet serving alongside him until 2019.
In the excerpt, which was obtained by People, Britney wrote about how she felt ‘infantilized’ by the conservatorship and the loss of independence that came with it.
‘I became a robot. But not just a robot — a sort of child-robot. I had been so infantilized that I was losing pieces of what made me feel like myself,’ she wrote.
Stolen maturity: Britney Spears, 41, said her conservatorship ‘infantilized’ her for 13 years and turned her into a ‘child-robot’ by stealing her sense of agency, according to an excerpt from her memoir obtained by People; seen in 2016 in NYC
Going deep: Her memoir The Woman In Me details her career, her struggles to end her conservatorship — which was dismantled in late 2021 — and her 14-month marriage to Sam Asghari
The Toxic singer also wrote that the conservatorship sapped her of much of her creative talent as well.
‘The conservatorship stripped me of my womanhood, made me into a child. I became more of an entity than a person onstage,’ she continued. ‘I had always felt music in my bones and my blood; they stole that from me.’
Britney described feeling ‘like a shadow of myself’ after losing her independence, and she went on to share how she struggled with rapid shifts in her personality due to the psychic tumult of the conservatorship.
‘This is what’s hard to explain, how quickly I could vacillate between being a little girl and being a teenager and being a woman, because of the way they had robbed me of my freedom,’ she explained. ‘There was no way to behave like an adult, since they wouldn’t treat me like an adult, so I would regress and act like a little girl; but then my adult self would step back in — only my world didn’t allow me to be an adult.’
She sounded particularly bitter describing how her father and his conservator urged her to display one persona on stage but then denied her that freedom once her concerts ended.
‘The woman in me was pushed down for a long time. They wanted me to be wild onstage, the way they told me to be, and to be a robot the rest of the time,’ Britney continued, adding that she couldn’t enjoy the extremes of life under her conservatorship.
‘I felt like I was being deprived of those good secrets of life — those fundamental supposed sins of indulgence and adventure that make us human,’ she wrote. ‘They wanted to take away that specialness and keep everything as rote as possible. It was death to my creativity as an artist.’
Losing it: ‘I became a robot. But not just a robot — a sort of child-robot. I had been so infantilized that I was losing pieces of what made me feel like myself,’ she wrote; seen in 2016 in San Jose, Calif.
Suspended adolescence: She said that losing her ability to make adult decisions made her feel like a child; seen in Las Vegas in 2016
After years being stuck under her conservatorship with no autonomy over her finances and massive wealth and very little control over her own body, Britney attempted to publicly fight back in June of 2021.
Amid a surge in interest thanks to the Free Britney movement, which campaigned on social media and via public protests for the end of her conservatorship, the songstress shared her own feelings about the conservatorship with a statement she read during a court hearing addressing the future of the arrangement.
After admitting that she hadn’t attended a court hearing in years because she feared she wouldn’t be heard, Britney shared disturbing allegations about the conservatorship’s control over her body and romantic relationships.
She said that she wanted to marry her then-boyfriend — and now estranged husband — Sam Asghari, but the conservatorship wouldn’t allow her to get married.
But the mother-of-two also hoped to have another baby with Sam, but she said an IUD she had at the time prevented her from doing so.
‘I wanted to take the [IUD] out so I could start trying to have another baby. But this so-called team won’t let me go to the doctor to take it out because they don’t want me to have children — any more children. So basically, this conservatorship is doing me way more harm than good,’ she said in one of her most shocking claims.
Elsewhere in her statement, she lambasted her father Jamie for his over-the-top expectations about her ability to perform on stage and in rehearsals.
She didn’t spare any affection for him, and she told the judge that she though he — and anyone else who had assisted him in maintaining the conservatorship — ‘should be in jail.’
Back and forth: ‘They wanted me to be wild onstage, the way they told me to be, and to be a robot the rest of the time,’ Britney continued; seen in Vegas in 2016
Bodily autonomy: In a 2021 statement in court, Britney claimed that her conservatorship wouldn’t allow her to marry her then-boyfriend Sam Asghari, and also forced her to keep in an IUD that she wanted removed in order to have another child; seen in 2018 in Beverly Hills
The conservatorship began to crumble shortly after she read her statement, with Jamie being suspended from his position by September, while the arrangement was ended all together by the judge overseeing it just two months later.
Since then, Britney has been ebullient on social media over her new freedom — to the concern of some fans and observers — and she was able to marry her longtime love Sam at her home in June of 2022.
The marriage wasn’t long for this world, though, and Britney and Sam were reported to have separated in August 2023, amid concerns about her mental health.
In her memoir, which was updated at the last minute to update sections featuring Sam in light of their impending divorce, Britney is finally sharing her side of the conservatorship in full detail.