What If Britney Spears Really Is Batshit Crazy?

I have not an evidentiary clue about the mental state of Britney Spears. Neither do you. About five people in this world likely do, probably not including Britney Spears herself. Those five people are the only ones on the planet not weighing in on the propriety of Spears’ conservatorship. So, much like sports commentary on the web, 99.9% of the people commenting have zero firsthand knowledge behind their opinions. Still, rampant speculation and zero-knowledge pronouncements are the coal that fires social media. And fun, I get that.

Britney Spears’ long-running conservatorship has been raging again in the news as the youthful pop star turned hackneyed Vegas pop star ranted in a court proceeding about the slavery-like conditions of the court order that keep her dad in charge of her life still at 39. She insisted she’s had an IUD force-fed into her cooch to prevent her from mating and she can’t quit working even if she’s hit her lip-synching limits. Both sure sound like slavery. Or how LeBron James refers to his current life on only $125 million a year in income.

The assumption among the fangirls and the general opiners alike is that Britney Spears is being held in some patriarchal hellscape of court-ordered, trumped-up mental health hold with dubious diagnosis. Like when a fictional villain with money and connections gets the wife trying to divorce him locked up in a mental institution as revenge. It’s unclear if this has ever happened outside of Lifetime Movies, but it certainly seems to fire up the daytime TV watchers with a selective bout of civil rights fury. Granted, the Kennedys did lobotomize and lock up their mentally troubled child for her entire adult life. There are crazy rich people exceptions to every normal life rule.

Conservatorships are typically enacted with older people suffering from senility or victims of severe medical situations like comas or other debilitating conditions. Somebody has to make financial decisions for a living, but incapacitated person. We picture a greedy nephew running the conservatorship show, but it’s usually the only responsible daughter or sister in the family. Nobody really gives a damn about these conservatorship cases until it happens to somebody rich and famous. Then there are sides to be had.

The 2007 VMA performance where Britney struggled and Simon Cowell called her career over.

There have been few cases like Britney Spears. Former Nickelodeon kid star Amanda Bynes was placed in conservatorship by her parents in 2013 after a string of bizarre incidents. She was tossing her bongs out of New York City high-rises, dousing her dog in gasoline while lighting a driveway fire at a random home, and scariest of all for those of us who lived in the area, driving her Beemer recklessly around Los Angeles smashing into parked cars.

Bynes’ parents requested a 5150 hold on her that eventually turned into a conservatorship. She spent the next seven years vaguely attending fashion school and popping up to assure people she was doing well. Last summer her conservatorship ended. Almost immediately she got a face tattoo and claimed she was marrying a random dude she met buying Slim Jims at a gas station minimart earlier that day. Worth considering: crazy is the hardest disease to cure.

Britney Spears conservatorship started back in 2008. It followed a solid full year of Britney acting like an involuntary patient at the Oregon State Hospital in Cuckoo’s Nest. It was also the year 2007 she gave the MTV Video Music Awards half-hearted, off soundtrack cue performance that Simon Cowell deemed the end of her career.

Crazy women shave their heads. It’s simply a fact.

She was seen driving her little kid around town on her lap, shaved her head, locked herself in the bathroom, would start beating up cars with an umbrella, and other things you only see ten times a day in any city with a decent homeless population. She was 5150’d on multiple occasions, sent to what was called “rehab” leading the public to believe drugs were the cause, eventually committed to a psych ward for months. Her dad Jamie Spears petitioned for and was granted a conservatorship over his daughter some months later. The biggest fear of family members is that their famous crazy rich daughter will be in the news for buying a three-legged cat for $50 million. That seems like it easily could’ve happened.

People forget the origin story of Britney Spears crazy when they discuss the undue burden of her current conservatorship. We have no idea what her medical or mental diagnosis is. We do know she was in the upper echelon of unquestionably nuts in 2008 when it was installed. We do know that former kid stars and pop stars like herself have an immensely high rate of drug abuse and mental illness as they hit their 20’s. The amount of psychological pressure and straight-up sexual abuse put on these often single-digit-aged kids is immense. We laugh about Demi Lovato being a Barney and Friends alum. Last year she almost died from her long-term drug addiction. Not to mention her depression and eating disorder. Thankfully now she’s just a non-binary podcast host with annoying pronouns. Rightfully she should be dead.

The list of these former kid stars turned delinquent young adults is endless. This past week alone two separate former Disney Kids TV stars were arrested for soliciting sex from minors. That’s not a coincidence. Most kid actors and entertainers are raped by adults, if not literally, then repeatedly figuratively. Often their own stage parents. Violence begets violence. Same too with underaged diddling. Google it. Carefully.

In 2008, the first conservatorship was granted, to Spears’ dad Jamie for her estate and medical, and to her lawyer, Andrew Wallet, who has a really bad last name for a shady lawyer, to manage her professional deals. Jame Spears takes home a low-six-figure annual management fee for managing the conservatorship.

Britney Spears is worth about $60 million give or take ten million. She has to have all of her personal expenses approved through the conservatorship. Granted, she’s able to still spend about half a million a year on personal and household expenses. Not quite pauper stage. Though not quite Money Mayweather making it rain hundreds while standing on top of his new Lambo. She doesn’t have build-your-own-spaceship money, but she could do a helicopter easily.

The stranger element to Britney Spears’ conservatorship is the fact she’s continued to be rolled out for concert work while living under it. We think of these legal cases when involving the sick or elderly or incarcerated or institutionalized — not people putting on six shows a week in Vegas for Asian tourists who are rich in Yen and still believe Spears is on the Billboard charts.

Britney and her yellow python performance in 2001 was probably the zenith of her pop star career

Spears has had two such runs in Vegas over the past decade. In the first, she appeared somewhat normal. That is, the staged elaborate dance routines to her litany of famous songs she’d sing to over a pre-recorded track felt a normal level of cheesy. The second run saw her suffering old lady problems like split pants seams and troubling physical movements that indicated an athlete well-past their prime. In your mid-30’s for a dancer that’s not a great sign. Jennifer Lopez is 51 and can twerk for up to five hours as demanded in her contract or simply to find a new mate. Though she’s also back to bedding Ben Affleck. Speaking of predicates for a 5150.

People see Britney Spears working, or her kitschy lovable mommy social media posts and assume she’s fine. Or they assume, not without reasonable merit, that dad and company are making her work to churn more cash into the estate. Though worth noting dad doesn’t get any of the estate’s wealth, merely his management fee for managing her affairs. Though other people in the general entourage like agents and managers and brand reps do definitely take a cut off Britney’s performance and brand revenue. What role they play in the final decisions is unknown. We assume Jamie Spears is running the entire show, but we have no idea.

Two events occurred recently that revived the erstwhile #FreeBritney from her conservatorship movement on social media. The first was a Hulu documentary called “Framing Britney Spears” which laid out how Britney was exploited and brutalized by the industry and the media in the 2000s following her early pop star rise to mega fame.

The gist of the piece was, while everybody in the media was knocking, exploiting, sexualizing, or satirizing Britney Spears and her odd behavior, she was simply a troubled young woman becoming more and more troubled.

It’s hard to deny that happened. It’s also hard to stop people from making fun of ditzy blonde pop stars who become immensely famous for dancing in sexy schoolgirl outfits. You can’t expect everybody to dive into a forensic investigation of the background of every celebrity exhibiting idiotic behavior before making snarky comments. You can expect it, but you won’t get it. It’s human nature to both celebrate and tear down famous people. It’s certainly media nature. It’s how you sell copies. This isn’t new. Or sexist, it applies to both genders. Try being a male pro athlete on a Philly sports team if you want to see adulation slash denigration cycles in vicious action. Danny Green of the Sixers had to remind Philly sports fans recently that athletes are only human. Good luck with that campaign, Danny.


As a result of the Britney Spears documentary, everybody who turned a buck off of Britney Spears’ struggles decided not to give the buck back, but to issue heartfelt apologies and insist they’d go on listening tours to be nicer to the future troubled young celebrities. Perez Hilton, who made his bones mocking Britney Spears, Lindsay Lohan, Paris Hilton in the mid-2000s, profusely admitted his wrongdoing in the groveling pile-on. None of which helped the rest of us who has to endure a decade of Perez Hilton on talk shows and reality shows thanks to his fame garnered bashing Britney Spears. An orgy of people insisting they were super sorry and joining self-reflection cults ensued. If only Joan Rivers were still alive to say she wasn’t sorry for a second. Sadly, the spineless outlive the vertebrates in our race.

Following the documentary uproar, Spears herself took to social media and turned the moment into a time to demand an end to her conservatorship. She filed a petition with the court to have the conservatorship ended. Within the filing, she made public many troubling allegations of gruesome-sounding facets of her virtual imprisonment. A laundry list of items she was prohibited or not prohibited from doing under the legal term of the order. The most shocking of these was her claim that she was not allowed to procreate freely.

Spears has two now grown teenage sons from her marriage to Kevin Federline, whoever the hell he was, but mentioned how she’d like to get married and start another family, but she was not allowed to marry without consent and she was forced to use an IUD to avoid pregnancy. The marriage part sounds like it could be reasonable under such a conservatorship, as it’s a legal proceeding. The IUD claim sounded creepy and weird and a little locked-in-the-basement-by-a-German-predator-ish. We do consider reproducing a basic human right. We also consider terminating pregnancies a basic human right. We’re a conflicted culture.

Spears apologized to her fans for not sharing these abusive constraints and elements of her conservatorship, and how badly she was being treated, sooner. She claims she puts on a happy face for the world, but now it was time to end this real-life Saw movie. Every celebrity with a Twitter account joined in to support Britney Spears, pushing ahead of the peon #FreeBritney hordes already working up plans to protest at her hearing. Even Britney’s younger sister, Jamie Lynn Spears, spoke up, insisting that she’d been supporting her sister “behind the scenes” the whole time. Unclear what that means, but behind the scenes invariably means you did no real work and never stuck your neck out. Heroes don’t hang out on the down low in the background. Nevertheless, a signal that the full tide against the conservatorship had turned in the public eye.

Leading up to the next stage of the petition to end the conservatorship, Britney’s professional team members have begun to resign. Her wealth manager, her lawyer, her talent manager, potentially her rabbit grooming team, all suddenly discovering they are about to be on the wrong side of public image history, issued resignation letters. Thirteen years seemed like enough time to ride the crazy girl’s gravy train with her dad as the conductor. There’s no indication any of them did anything illegal or even highly inappropriate, but now that documentaries and investigative pieces are boiling up, time to hitch the wagon to a new horse. Twitter is the tea leaves of our generation. All cultural tides now turn there.

Britney Spears and Madonna Kissed On Stage in 2003 to Shock the World With Completely Staged Lesbian Baiting.

Three weeks ago, in a petition dating originally back to last Fall, a judge denied Britney Spears’ request to remove her father from being her conservatorship czar. Many unread people read it as a judge making yet another ruling against Britney Spears’ personal freedoms. Every media outlet with a legal analyst starting piecing together editorials about the evils of conservatorships, examples of how they’re abused (and they can be), and drumming up the civil rights case for Britney Spears liberation from this onerous court-ordered virtual San Quentin.

For his part, dad has been suspiciously quiet on the subject, only to constantly reiterate that he loves his daughter, takes his role as her conservator seriously, isn’t ripping his daughter off, and he’s getting a little sick of all the death threats from Britney fans. We can confirm he’s not partying like a rockstar. We’d know. No stories of him at 1OAK getting bottle service with OnlyFans models half his age. No boats or planes or limited edition race cars. Not that $140,000 a year is anything to sneeze at for a salary, but it’s not exactly highway robbery in rich celebrity ripoff circles. Jeff Bezos’ barber probably takes home $200K a year. Largely symbolic.

Britney Spears repeatedly claims in court that her father is a maniacal demon, a Marvel multiverse villain who has puppeteered her into a ruinous state. She claims her father is dominating her every living moment, working her to death, picking out what she gets to eat, wear, or where to shit, keeping her in literal bondage. So, two quite different accounts of the father-daughter relationship in the Spears family, depending on who you ask.

What remains entirely unclear yet entirely fundamental to this public discussion is Britney Spears’ mental health. She sobbed to the presiding judge in her current case that she’s living in a Handmaids Tale designed to exploit her financially, make her perform “Oops I Did It Again” for packed casino lounges, and prevent her from bearing children or buying brand name cheese at the supermarket. That while she may have a quirk or issue or two, she’s an otherwise capable grownup who should be managing her own life and affairs, financial, sexual, online shopping, or otherwise.

The judge in her latest motion agreed to let Britney Spears pick her own personal attorney moving forward. She had only a court-appointed attorney in her defense previously. Spears’ new personally chosen attorney, a bulldog of a celebrity lawyer, used his new position to immediately call for Jamie Spears to resign in shame as his daughter’s conservatorship and leave the planet on a Virgin Galactic one-way ticket. I’m not sure that’s a formal legal request. But it made for great headlines. Make no doubt, this case is being tried in the press.

The assumption the majority of the commenting public is working under is that Britney Spears is, at most, a bit odd, but certainly not in need of adult supervision at 39-years of age. But, what if that assumption is completely wrong?

What if Britney Spears is objectively and roundly batshit crazy?

The same junior marketing managers who were quick to give you expert medical advice on Covid have deemed Britney Spears 99% A-OK. They have no clue. Even people with psychiatric and medical degrees not directly involved in the case have no clue. Almost nobody in this entire world minus a tiny handful of people bound by law and pinky swears never to share a single detail know. And to their credit, none of those people have leaked an iota of actual facts. It’s maddening how well they’ve kept their secrets. TMZ producers don’t know what to do with their bribe money. It’s no good on this one.

Internet personality Chris Crocker led the FreeBritney movement in 2007 before hashtags were still called the pound sign.

That leaves us in the objective evaluations preferred department with little known information to go on. We know Britney Spears was what less serious mental health professionals call “nuts” back in 2008. Not only was her behavior beyond strange, but a number of medical doctors deemed her so officially, enough to be temporarily institutionalized.

If this commitment and conservatorship process were so simple and readily available to the evil exploitive class, why do we almost never see it? We mentioned Amanda Bynes, who tried to incinerate her dog. But name another young celebrity who’s been placed in a court-approved conservatorship? and there have been a ton of crazy ones. Certainly many with fierce drug addictions and wild, self-destructive behavior.

All we’ve seen of Britney in the past decade are little post-show snippets or an occasional social media family photo share. She’s been absent from any public arena where you could even get a hint of her sanity. Even Joe Biden is forced to stumble through a teleprompter read for five minutes every third day wherein we can mock his obvious cognitive struggles. With Britney, we get an Americana photo outside a Dairy Queen or a bikini pose to show she’s still got it. The only uncensored Britney moments are in court, crying and pleading for release from the demons. Real or perceived.

We know that not only did the court grant the initial conservatorship, but they’ve also kept it in place for a long time now. Unless we assume the judicial branch is baked into the keep-Britney-enslaved cabal, they are seeing something in reports quite different from how she is presenting herself in her tearful court hearings. What might those reports contain?

In 2020, Britney went on Instagram to announce she had accidentally burned down her home gym.

Put yourself in the shoes of the judge. What kind of evidence would you be looking at to convince you to maintain a strict conservatorship? A conservatorship repeatedly knocked in the media, derided by screaming #FreeBritney hash-taggers, and probably super unpopular with your teen nieces? If you’re letting Dad decide how exactly how many Marie Callendar’s pie runs his almost forty-year-old daughter can have each month, what are you seeing in those psych reports and hearing in testimony on her mental state?

The actual answer could be insane. It’s possible Britney Spears is insane. That her mental faculties are shot to hell. While she may not be dangerous enough to warrant commitment, that she sees demons and dead baby skulls in every inkblot. That she thinks every year is 1999 and gets dressed up for the Grammy’s every single Sunday afternoon. That she smears dog feces on her upper lip and insists everybody call her Cowboy Tom. What if she was so chewed up as a kid actor turned teen pop star that psychosis began to manifest in her 20’s, even worse than many of her fellow, deeply troubled Disney kid star alums? What if 2008 wasn’t an anomaly, what if shaving her head and attacking cars and people with umbrellas and insane fears about her kids is her forever normal?

If you’ve known clinically mentally ill people in your life, you know this is more than possible. Many people don’t get better. Drugs and treatment often contain the illness, but it never truly goes away. Like Oprah being fat. It’s a stasis state despite her temporary periods of dropping 30 for a Weight Watchers promo. It’s possible Britney Spears flunks every single mental wellness test.

Occam’s Razor suggests this is the likely scenario, or certainly more likely than a bunch of random men and women aligning illicit intentions all in the name of oppressing Britney Spears, a person everybody is inclined naturally to like. She’s a former member of the Mickey Mouse Club. The sympathetic reactions for her are running near 100% on social media. And social media only likes puppies and kittens at 57%. A bit higher if they have interspecies friends.

This isn’t a testament to the veracity of Jamie Spears’ statement that he loves his daughter and only wants what’s best for her. Who knows? Not me. Not you. Maybe the same five people in this entire world who know Britney Spears’ true mental condition. But as the mob descends upon dad as the most obvious target in this private drama being played out in public, maybe it’s worth considering he’s not a maniacal beast. He could just be the dad.