June 24, 2021 – Pop icon Britney Spears spoke out against the trusteeship she has lived under for 13 years on Wednesday, telling a Los Angeles estates judge she wanted her life back.
In a 24-minute statement, Spears told the judge overseeing the guardianship that she wanted it to end “without having to be assessed.” She called the arrangement “abusive” and said she had been “traumatized” and “in denial” despite upbeat posts she posted on Instagram over the past year, according to to Reuters.
“I just want my life back,” she said. “I’m not here to be anyone’s slave.”
After the statement, the court suspended and the audio transmission was cut off, Reuters reported. Full transcripts have been released by several news outlets, including this slightly modified version through Variety.
Spears’ statement came as a shock after years of silence on guardianship. Public speculation about the arrangement has resurfaced over the past year due to the #FreeBritney movement on social media, reports of leaked court documents and a 2021 documentary that showed it could be feel trapped.
During Wednesday’s hearing, Spears spoke by phone with Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Brenda Penny about the court-approved arrangement that began in 2008 after she had had a Mental Health breakdown. Penny said Spears should apply to court to request an end to the guardianship.
Under the terms of the guardianship, Spears would have to demonstrate that she can take responsibility for her personal and financial affairs, Reuters reported. During the hearing, Penny supported Spears for speaking out.
“I know it took a lot of courage for you to say all you have to say today,” she said. “I want to let you know that the court appreciates your coming to the line and shares how you feel.”
Spears, 39, said she wanted to remarry and have a baby but that she is not allowed to go to the doctor to have a contraceptive device removed. She talked about her Mental Health and said the doctors put her on the drug lithium, which made it less able to function. Spears also said she has been forced to perform in the past and now has to attend many therapy sessions every week against his will.
“I’m not happy. I can’t to sleep. I’m so angry, it’s crazy, ”she said. “And I’m depressed. I cry everyday.
Spears last spoke in court in May 2019, but the hearing was closed to the public and his testimony sealed. On Wednesday, Spears said she wanted people to hear her thoughts.
“I feel tied up and I feel intimidated and I feel left out and alone,” she said. “I deserve to have the same rights as everyone else, having a child, a family, any of those things, and more.”