Dude, #IAMBritney, and it’s the ugly truth. I’ve been a fan of the pop star since Baby One More Time. As a lover of any big artist, you take a great deal of personal heat when you begin to defend them, specifically now in the days of social media commentary. Britney Spears is a cautionary tale. She has been since Justin, in fairness. From my teenage purview in Brooklyn, witnessing her sadness overtake her performances, it seemed like no one, including her parents, had her best interest at heart. I was a fan since the Mickey Mouse Club. I noticed how young white girls were just, left open, to the World to be taken advantage of all for the sake of album sales. I saw a similar sadness in artists I admired such as Michael Jackson and Whitney Houston. Jackson went on trial to defend himself against child abuse. Houston was found dead in her bathroom via a drug overdose. Maybe as they say, “it’s the way the cookie crumbles”, but why should pursuing big dreams come at a cost by those who are better off due to your sales and popularity? It’s abusive, to say the least.
Netflix released a project starring Gone Girl’s Rosamund Pike, called I Care A Lot, Pike took home a Golden Globe award for best actress for her portrayal of Marla Grayson whose the main character in the story. Her character was a con woman who survives by working as a Court-appointed guardian. She stole assets from elderly singles who were vulnerable targets. As a guardian, she becomes this once stranger’s sole point of reference as it relates to their money, property, medicine, and yes mental capacity. You should watch the film. The plotline’s prime focus shows just how loosely the court can be used in personal relationships between adults and adults. The same can be found in many family law cases when children are separated due to divorces. One parent is deemed more livable in these circumstances which inarguably holds diminishing aspects to the future of the family. Abuse exists.
Britney was allowed to talk to the court. It’s a heartbreaking monologue though she is reading from four sheets of paper which she explains in the recording as well. Her parents are culprits. Back in 2017, I was diagnosed with acute bipolar disorder and was asked to be put on a 5150 hold. This is a 5-day hold where an individual or emergency personnel recognizes that an individual’s mental capacity has been reduced and may be considered a danger to themselves or others. I tried to hurt my boyfriend at the time. The hold lasts legally for 72 hours. Both of my parents, who were separated at the time, flew out to Los Angeles and were both on-site at the time of admittance. No one asked for tests. No one checked to see my iron levels since I’d been diagnosed with iron-deficient anemia back in 2007. The hospital, Kedren Community Health Center, said that I was still acting “strange” on my 3rd day there and told my parents and boyfriend that I need to speak to prove that I am okay. They also diagnosed me with acute depression. Though I said that I felt like the heatwave had something to do with my mental breakdown it wasn’t until my exit interview, I was able to speak to anyone. They would listen to my mother, who knows nothing about mental health and has an education that does not go past a GED but focused on her role, mother. What did they know about the relationship between my parents and me before this hold? Nothing. What did they know about my relationship with my boyfriend? Nothing. I’ll stop here.
It’s easy to read a story and THINK that we would know how to react if we were in the same situation when in reality, human experiences are personal, and they stay dormant as long as someone is coerced into silence or chooses to stay silent. I am Britney. I’d never been quiet about what has happened to myself, or people like myself, and any educational information surrounding adult inflicted abuse. Not all parents have their child’s best interest at play. Not all judges are compassionate. Not all celebrities are perfect. But all abuse feels the same. We have to create a conversation where those who have lived and survived can help change the context around who gets a say. If our country is based on freedom then why are there so many legal loopholes for bad actors to find success?