'They made me feel like nothing': Britney Spears addresses conservatorship

Britney Spears describes being forced to work and tour, and barred from seeing friends or driving her own car. PHOTO: REUTERS

NEW YORK (AFP) - American singer Britney Spears on Sunday (Aug 28) released a lengthy audio message concerning the controversial guardianship that kept her primarily under her father's control for more than 13 years.

A Los Angeles judge in November 2021 dissolved the conservatorship long overseen by Spears' father Jamie Spears - an arrangement the singer said had prevented her from having a contraceptive IUD removed despite her desire for more kids.

The audio message was originally tweeted by Britney Spears without comment but the link was then deleted. The 22 minutes of audio of Spears' voice remain available online, however.

"I woke up this morning and I realised there's a lot going on in my head that I haven't shared with anyone," Spears says in the raw, emotional recording.

She then details the conservatorship, echoing what she told a California court in a bombshell hearing last summer.

The now 40-year-old describes being forced to work and tour, and barred from seeing friends or driving her own car.

Spears says that her phone was tapped, and she felt unsafe asking for help.

"They made me feel like nothing, and I went along with it," Spears says, describing being fat-shamed. "It was demoralising."

"You also have to understand, it was like 15 years of touring and doing shows. And I'm 30 years old, living under my dad's rules," the pop phenom adds.

"And while all of this is going on, my mom's witnessing this, my brother, my friends - they all go along with it."

Spears rocketed to fame in her teens on hits like ...Baby One More Time (1998) and Oops!... I Did It Again (2000), becoming one of the world's reigning pop stars.

But she suffered a highly publicised 2007 breakdown, which included attacking a paparazzo's car at a gas station.

The conservatorship began in 2008.

It did not formally end until November 2021, after Mr Spears was removed from his position in charge of her finances and estate at a hearing in September.

Since gaining her freedom, Spears has married her boyfriend Sam Asghari, 28.

On Friday she released her first new music in six years, a duet with British singer Elton John called Hold Me Closer, a dance-inflected take on John's ballad Tiny Dancer (1971).

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