Pop-singer Britney Spears went before a Los Angeles probate judge yesterday to beg the court to lift the conservatorship she’s been under for nearly 13 years.
Spears’ father, Jamie Spears, has controlled her $60 million estate since 2008 — a year that saw the star have a public mental breakdown that resulted in hospitalization.
Characterizing her father’s rule over her life as “abusive,” Spears said during the hearing that while she may outwardly seem to be functioning well, she is miserable.
“I’ve lied and told the whole world I’m OK and I’m happy. It’s a lie,” she said. “I’ve been in denial. I’ve been in shock. I am traumatized. Fake it ’til you make it, but now I’m telling you the truth, OK? I’m not happy. I can’t sleep. I’m depressed. I cry every day.”
One of the key revelations Spears shared with Judge Brenda Penny is that her father’s team has prevented her from marrying her longtime boyfriend Sam Ashgari and has mandated she stay on birth control to prevent her from having any additional children.
“I was told right now in the conservatorship, I’m not able to get married or have a baby,” the 39-year-old said. “I have an I[U]D inside of myself right now so I don’t get pregnant. 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.”
Spears also accused her father of keeping her on the psychotropic drug Lithium against her will.
“It’s a strong drug. You can go mentally impaired if you stay on it longer than 5 months. I felt drunk, I couldn’t even have a conversation with my mom or dad about anything,” she said.
Reading from a prepared statement, reprinted in full at Variety, Spears addressed Penny’s previous dismissal of her concerns.
“I haven’t been back to court in a long time, because I don’t think I was heard on any level when I came to court the last time. I brought four sheets of paper in my hands and wrote in length what I had been through the last four months before I came there … The last time I spoke to you … made me feel like I was dead, like I didn’t matter, like nothing had been done to me, like you thought I was lying,” Spears said. “I want to be heard. I’m telling you this again so that maybe you understand the depth and degree and the damage … I want and deserve changes going forward.”
Spears ended her comments by directly asking Penny to give her back control over her estate and her life. “Basically this conservatorship is doing me way more harm than good. I deserve to have a life. I’ve worked my whole life,” she said. “I feel ganged up on, I feel bullied, I feel left out and alone. I’m tired of feeling alone. I deserve to have the same rights as anybody.”
Spears’ next court date is set for July 14.