Britney Spears ‘is dealing with debilitating emotional issues,’ she isn’t ‘in control’

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The Britney Spears saga continues to upset me, because I keep feeling like people are focusing on the wrong things. We now know for sure that Britney is not currently doing well – her medication situation is being evaluated, and her conservatorship is in shambles. The court is doing a thorough investigation of the conservatorship and whether Britney should be allowed the personal freedom she seems to want. Lynne Spears is involved too, and historically, Lynne’s influence has not been good for Britney. Kevin Federline is reportedly keeping their sons close and not allowing them too much time (or any time) with Britney right now.

Throughout the week, people have been focused on some comments that Britney’s longtime manager Larry Rudolph made to TMZ. Seemingly out of nowhere, Rudolph chimed in, saying that he doesn’t think Britney will ever work in Vegas again and will probably never work again. He later clarified, saying “Other media sources seem to be picking up my quotes to TMZ as implying that Britney will never work again. That’s not what I said. I simply said that the Vegas residency is now officially off and that she hasn’t called me in months to talk about doing anything so I’m not sure if or when she will ever want to work again. It’s that simple.” All of which… is not what the focus should be, Jesus. Britney has hundreds of millions of dollars. The current conversation isn’t “let’s make Britney well enough so we can trot her out in Vegas and make even more money off this fragile woman.” The conversation is “can Britney function on a daily level?” And the answer seems to be no, she can’t function.

Britney Spears is weathering a difficult time amid her conservatorship drama, post-treatment lifestyle and her father Jamie’s recovery after suffering a life-threatening colon rupture last fall.

“Britney is dealing with debilitating emotional issues that need to be treated with medications. It’s like she isn’t in control over her emotions right now,” a Spears family source tells PEOPLE. “Everything is very up and down.”

PEOPLE previously reported that Spears’ prior medication regimen had lost some efficacy over time. “There is no doubt that she needs to be on medications to try and find a balance again, but it’s very scary when the meds are not working,” the source continues.

According to the insider, Spears experiences a range of emotions on a daily basis. “Right now, she is very sluggish and down. Some days, she is a zombie. There is no life and definitely no passion in her. It’s very sad.”

[From People]

Yeah… I know “sources” keep saying that Britney’s doctors are working on a new prescription drug cocktail for her, but I’m kind of wondering if we’ll eventually learn that Britney has been refusing to take her meds. That’s what it reads like to me, although I fully acknowledge I could be wrong. We know that Britney told the court that Jamie was drugging her without her consent, and I feel like this is part of that.

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48 Responses to “Britney Spears ‘is dealing with debilitating emotional issues,’ she isn’t ‘in control’”

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  1. Rocky says:

    Poor girl. Never had a chance

    • Ronaldinhio says:

      We keep saying – is she not taking her meds and is this making her sluggish.
      However I have encountered many patients who have been poorly or wrongly diagnosed and many of their symptoms are as a result of their medication and very often their over medication. Additionally any patient having medication changed or titrating it up can seem upsetting to those unused to observing the situation.
      I would be very interested to see Britney being looked at as a blank canvas by a new psychiatric and psychological therapeutic team.
      If Britney is ill enough to require a conservatorship – which is a very significant step – it would seem at odds with her working, driving and maintaining the life that she does.
      Stripping rights from a patient in that manner should mean that their functional level is very significantly impaired.
      If she decided to have relationships with ‘sleazy’ men or spend her money in unwise ways, use illegal drugs – that is for her to decide, although as a parent it must be hard to observe.
      A conservatorship should only be for the very worst circumstances.
      I know we may disagree with this but no-one placed a conservatorship on Charlie Sheen when he went full tiger blood.
      I would question the paternalistic use of conservatorship in the general sense.

      • SamC says:

        Do you have any actual informed knowledge of mental illness beyond gossip? How ignorant.

        My BFF is bi-polar, her parents do not have a conservatorship but manage her finances and have power of attorney for medical and financial decisions. When on her meds and they are working as they should, you would have no idea she has a mental illness. She drives, goes out in public, dates, volunteers, obtained a second masters degree and when she speaks, as she often does, on living with mental illness, audiences are surprised because she doesn’t fit what they assume someone with bi-polar should look or act like.

        And while totally based on what gossip pages say, I’d venture to say the courts felt her father was more capable of taking this on especially, if memory serves, when the breakdown first started presenting her mother was the primary parent for the younger Spears kid, who was still a minor and also pregnant.

    • CheckThatPrivilege says:

      You said it, Rocky. Being born to parents who wanted to exploit and monetize her beauty and talent was the worst thing that could have happened to Britney — just as it is to other children whose parents want to control the crap out of their kids’ lives. If only they could have just let her be a playful kid who got to discover her own path and make private mistakes — that’s still my wish for her, that she’ll find her way through all the toxic early conditioning she got and come into a good life of her own making. Jamie and Lynne Spears should be ashamed of themselves, along with everyone else who has profited off of her lost childhood.

    • Krakken says:

      This entire situation and the discourse around Britney infuriates me. This is some ableist shit. And everyone concern trolling as well. She’s an adult woman who should be allowed to live her life and make her decision. If she wasn’t a walking, talking atm for her family she would not be under any kind of conservatorship. Such bullshit.

  2. Desolee says:

    What happened to the cute (trainer?) guy she was seeing?

    • ChillyWilly says:

      I have a feeling her dad has been “hiring” boyfriends for her. Britney gets companionship, her dad feels better that she is dating someone on his payroll, and the boyfriend gets to sleep with Britney Spears and all the perks that brings. It’s so tragic.

      • LadyT says:

        Her mental illness is tragic. Attempting to safely, protectively, give her as normal, enjoyable, complete a life as possible is not.

    • Kate says:

      She just posted on her IG today pictures with him and the caption says I love this man and tags him

      • Socks says:

        I saw that IG post too and wondered who controls her IG. I’m wondering if all the recent posts of her dancing etc. aren’t just old videos? I really hope her doctors want to help her and find the right meds for her. This whole situation makes me so sad for her.

  3. Lady D says:

    I really hope it turns out okay for Brit. I have always had a soft spot for her, and I would hate to see something tragic (institutionalized) happen to her.

  4. Becks1 says:

    I feel dramatic saying this, but my heart breaks for her. Poor girl. I hope she is okay in the end – happy and healthy.

    • Esmom says:

      I hear you. I wonder if getting away from the industry would be best for her. Although I also get the argument that work provides a structure that can be helpful. This line of work is fraught, though, so maybe stepping away is for the best. She deserves some peace and happiness.

    • Dani says:

      I feel this, too. I’ve loved Britney since I was 9. Which is 20 years now. And I just feel so bad for her. I got to grow up but she didn’t, ya know?

  5. ChillyWilly says:

    Poor Britney. This makes me so sad.

  6. olive says:

    larry’s comments sounded very bitter and cold – he said something like “I’m only here for her if she decides to work again” – very telling. People thought since he had been her manager since the early 00s he maybe had her best interests in mind, but it seems it’s all about the money for him too.

    • MrsPanda says:

      Yes! I was struck by the same thing Olive; ”she hasn’t called me in months”. F*** off Larry, it’s not about you right now. Just say no comment. What a jerk!

  7. Jag says:

    I just hope that Britney isn’t reading all of this speculation about her, that her doctors figure out what she truly needs, and that she can become more stable and happy again.

    It bothers me that they’re seemingly only looking at medication to help her. There are different types of behavioral therapy which can be really good for some people, and – from my own experience with various psychologists and psychiatrists – some doctors don’t look at the person as a person, but rather as a subject who MUST respond a certain way to what they’re doing or they’re wrong. As an example, I had a psychiatrist who dropped me as a patient, saying that she couldn’t help me since I couldn’t take what she had prescribed, after I wasn’t reacting well to Lithium and then had a seizure after she added Wellbutrin to the mix – so I took myself off of both because I was scared for my life.

    Another psychiatrist almost yelled at me – and said that he didn’t believe me – because I kept reacting badly to the medications he was prescribing. I kept getting rashes and was itching, so would call him and he’d prescribe something else. Well, the last time, he said that he didn’t believe that I had a rash and made me come in to show him. When he saw it, he then believed me, but then said he had nothing else to offer me. (It turns out that I have a genetic mutation which causes me to not be able to metabolize tricyclic-based drugs, and that’s what he had been giving me. They were going toxic in my system. He didn’t figure that out – I did. He only saw me as not responding to the tried and true, and dropped me when he couldn’t help me. No thinking outside the box, and certainly nothing tailor-made for me.)

    Anyway, as one bipolar person to another, I wish Britney well and hope that she’s better soon.

    • Original Jenns says:

      I’m so glad you took control and listened to your body and yourself instead of doctors too narrow-minded to help. There are so many treatments and doctors should have an obligation to at least be knowledgeable about what’s out there. They may not be experts in everything, but they should be able to recommend different treatments and other doctors when they can’t help. I wish you continued health!

  8. Kristin says:

    Does anyone know what happened to her? Or what her diagnosis would be? It seems so sad, I was in high school in peak Britney time and I wonder if these issues were there back then, or does it tend to come out in adulthood? I don’t really remember the timeline, just that there was the head shaving incident.

    • Gina says:

      She’s bipolar and/or schizophrenic. Typically it manifests in a person between the ages of 18 and 22, i.e. the college years.
      It’s common for kids to go off to school and start acting really manic and people thinking it’s just adjusting to the college life when in fact it’s their bipolar disorder coming out.
      Kanye has the same disorder.

    • Julaine says:

      Nothing has been officially confirmed. Some mental diseases, such as schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder (which is a combination of schizophrenia with a mood disorder) may not manifest until late adolescence or early twenties. From her public demeanor when her life appeared to go off track in the mid-2000’s she displayed elements of many possible diagnoses so I would hesitate to put a label on her health issues. However, a conservatorship lasting this long of a young adult that was deemed healthy enough to work and carry the burden of a major production suggests something very serious indeed.

  9. SamC says:

    People were reaching out to Larry Rudolph as he’s her manager and we’re asking him about work. It’s clear her meds are off. It’s typical for people to self wean themselves when they are feeling good and in control, and with her father being sick imagine that part of Britney’s care may have also been less of a focus so here we are. I think her father did a terrific job…she seemed healthy, had a strong relationship with her kids, had a stable work/performing routine. Lynne Spears having a major role again worries me.

    • Shirurusu says:

      I agree with you, I worry more about what will happen to Britney if her father becomes ill again and passes away, her mother is a nutcase and a stage mom to boot! I hope she gets a new psychiatric team to stabilize her in preparation of that eventually. When her father eventually passes I think she’ll be left very vulnerable :/

  10. Embee says:

    Britney is emblematic of what is happening to American girls. Watch and take note. This is the “optimal” female person (from our sick society’s perspective) played out to its natural conclusion.

    She was told her value was in her exterior and how she made others feel (sexy) and then self-medicated to deal with the pain of not having her authentic self seen. She sought refuge in marriages and eventually motherhood but those, too, were external and when threatened she broke.

    I don’t know anything about her current treatment regime but it’s reasonable to assume that she has access to the best medical and mental health care available. And it’s not working. If she’s not a cautionary tale of the consequence of following fame and fortune I don’t know what is.

    • Wilady says:

      I would think a huge aspect would be having a crowd literally around her all day and night no matter where she goes, not knowing if those close to her genuinely love her, and having every person on the planet talking about her and picking apart everything she ever does. Also, the second she “wasn’t sexy”, while pregnant, she became a laughingstock. And her real actual emotional breakdown from all the frustration became a joke.

      That would drive me into an asylum.

      Maybe we should all stop articles about her. I don’t think they help.

    • Starkiller says:

      Jesus Christ, do you seriously believe that mental illness is exclusively an American problem??

      • Embee says:

        No. I believe that Britney is emblematic of the culture in the US and that culture, when played to its conclusion, leads to disaster.

    • Tiffany :) says:

      Many mental health issues are caused by brain chemistry, not life experience. While stressors do exacerbate symptoms, it is my understanding that they do not “cause” most mental illnesses, except for things like PTSD.

    • Jaded says:

      @Starkiller – nobody said anything about mental illness being exclusively American. No need to respond rudely and without basis for your comment.

    • otaku fairy... says:

      Britney Spears has mental health issues and severe mental health issues run in her family. Fame at an early age, plus some of the behaviors of her parents and others around her likely didn’t help with that. I do think fame at an early age is a risk to someone’s mental wellbeing, especially when factors like sexism are looked at. However, it’s kind of problematic and ‘#FreeBritney’-ish how people hold this woman who isn’t really speaking for herself on that issue up as some cautionary tale again and again about dress codes and attribute all the problems she’s had with her mental health to that issue. Plus, there’s a tendency to bring up that pressure without also mentioning how she was simultaneously sent the message that her purity was her worth too as a young female public figure, and all the gaslighting, obsession, and hostility that comes with that. TBH, we can’t be 100% sure she’d have been fine without fame either.
      I feel bad for Britney, but don’t really know what to say about her situation. We’re all on the outside looking in and all kinds of theories are flying about what’s really been going on with her.

  11. Veronica S. says:

    I’m sorry, but count me as one of those people who thinks the best thing that could happen is for her to leave the industry. Whatever routine she gets out of the schedule is offset, I suspect, by the myriad people surrounding her that went to exploit the shit out of her. With everything that’s come out about the environment in the industry over the years, I just can’t imagine any of it is healthy for somebody that psychologically fragile.

    • paranormalgirl says:

      She can build healthy routine around her likes without performing as a trained seal. Routine is one of the best auxiliary stabilizers, but not if the routine is stressful. The best thing for her would be cognitive behavioral therapy, the lowest therapeutic medication dose possible, being in a beautiful environment that she loves, doing something that makes her happy, and having access to her friends and family. She has more than earned that.

  12. Mar says:

    Her face has hollowed out at such a young age. You can see that she has been highly medicated in her eyes. I think her mental illness is much greater than we thought.

  13. Original Jenns says:

    I know people who have been diagnosed with serious mental illnesses. They are amazing people who are living ordinary lives. But it took years to find the right medication for them, and for some of them, eventually it didn’t work anymore and it took more time to find their “new” treatment. And they acknowledge that they will probably have to change it up every so often for the rest of their lives. I feel like what we’ve heard through the grapevine with Britney, is that she may not accept this, who knows if she ever has. If she doesn’t believe there is something in her brain that needs help, then of course she’s resistant to new treatment. I agree, she’s probably not taking her medication. And that opens her up to people who may or may not have her best interests at heart. Jamie may have been overly cautious, but considering her fame, that is understandable. This is not an ordinary, regular person dealing with bi-polar or whatever it is. She is very rich and famous, and a huge target for slimy people. I do think her work had a couple of goals. 1. To keep her busy and away from undesirables and 2. To help make as much money as possible so that when Jamie isn’t able to manage it anymore, she’s set for life. She’s only 38, a couple of Vegas residencies and good investments, and she will never have to think of work again. I do think the next step may be another type of schedule to keep her working without the stress.

    • HelloSunshine says:

      This was my thought. She might have needed to change up the medication she’s taking because her regiment was no longer effective and working for her the way it should be. It’s hard as hell to figure out what needs to be tweaked and it can absolutely lead to feeling sluggish and down. It also isn’t some quick thing they can do, they have to wean off of medications and then slowly increase the therapeutic level of others. The best place to do that is in a medical setting where doctors and nurses are available at all times to help imo. She’s fortunate that she can afford that at least. I hope they can figure this out and she can be back to doing what she loves doing (idk if that’s necessarily performing or whatever).
      Also side eyeing that her mom is involving herself. I assume there’s a reason her dad is the main person on the conservatorship and mom isn’t involved with it.

  14. Lex says:

    I can imagine if yoy were never informed of your diagnosis or maybe what meds you needed, you could easily come skeptical and suspicious if you learnt you were being given drugs against your will (and told they were vitamins or something).
    Not that I have any idea what is going on in this situation… all random and unhelpful speculation

  15. Gina says:

    I don’t know, I think that she actually wants to be performing. I think she likes to be busy and on stage and get the attention and she likes to dance. I think the Vegas residency is what she wants.

  16. Steph says:

    Don’t forget that she harmed herself and held her son hostage in a bathroom at her bottom. She was a danger to herself and others and that is why the conservatorship was formed. It wasn’t just so she wouldn’t drive or figure out if she wanted Starbucks. She would be dead of her family hadn’t stepped in.

  17. kristen says:

    This is all so sad.
    I hope she leaves the industry and takes care of herself and her boys.

  18. Annie says:

    I have a loved one in Britney’s position. She needs medication and constant supervision. It’s not fair to accuse the parents in these cases of “drugging patients against their will.” Some people simply can’t function without medication. Some people need to enter hospitals for treatment. It’s for their own good. If you let them run their life on their own, they will put themselves in danger over and over again. We already saw what Britney is capable of. Without her father she would be dead like Amy Whinehouse right now. Look all the stuff Amanda Bynes was up to without supervision.

    Some people are severely mentally ill. If she needs to be committed, if she needs to retire, if she needs supervision 24/7 so be it. We almost lost her once. We don’t need another Marilyn Monroe tragedy. I rather have Britney alive than trolling the streets high out of her mind, hooking up with paparazzis and endangering her kids.

    But I do hope her parents put a stop to her business handlers. The only thing they can talk about is her career. Not her wellbeing. Notice how none of these people have mentioned her sons once. She needs to be ok not to perform again. But to be a good mom to those kids.

  19. VintageS says:

    Good Lord, they trick the poor thing out like a circus pony.

  20. Katashae says:

    I think this is sad and unfortunate to gossip about. For not only Britney but her dad and family as well. No one knows what dealing with someone with severe psychological illnesses is like unless you’ve done it yourself. It’s devastating, difficult, and often unmanageable without lots of medical help and hospitalization. Britney reads to me like someone on the spectrum of the schizophrenia diseases, and those are almost impossible to control long term, as the patient will go through phases of difficulty or refusing to take the medications. More often than not paranoia and lashing out claiming “mind control” or “forced medication/etc” happen and it’s impossible to reach them without intervention. And no, these people in these phases can NOT take care of themselves, or their children, if any. It’s devastating and an ongoing battle for all involved and it’s wrong to speculate about the family’s motives or actions. She should just…get monitored help and retire in peace.

  21. Jace says:

    Britney wanted to be a performer her entire life. I think Lynn embraced it and encouraged it obviously. But with the exception of Mickey Moose Club Britney wasn’t in the limelight until her first album. I think around this time she was diagnosed after touring and becoming very famous. I dated someone bipolar for 4 years and I see this as Britney being in a down place right now and once her meds are corrected and she makes changes to be happier personally things will change. With her dad being sick/being tired of performing maybe she’s searching for a change and this is the way she can accomplish that (going off meds and acting out etc). I hope the best for her. I think it’s also worthy to note the mental illness comes from Jamie’s family. His mother was bipolar.

  22. Busyann says:

    I have the biggest soft spot for Britney. The Circus and Blackout albums are my jam. But I feel so bad for her. I too have wondered what exactly is wrong. For those that remember the very public breakdown no one ever really said what happened. It quite honestly seemed to come out of no where. One day you hear she’s getting a divorce and then she’s hanging around with Lufti, who just looked like a bad character, and then it was the crazed umbrella incident. But then Jamie swooped in and the rest is history. She got better, but we never really knew what the issue was. It’s none of our business, obviously, and trying to armchair guess seems cruel. I want the best for her.

    I just have one thing to add. It seems like this all happened shortly around the time her Piece of Me Residency ended and she was gearing up for Domination. It’s just weird that the medication was working well up until that point.

  23. stephanie says:

    To be so low functioning that she has been in a longterm and seemingly endless conservatorship, I find it strange that she is in a relationship with this guy Sam. Could this be a delusion on Britney’s end?

    I would find it extremely alarming as a family member of Britney if a “normal”/mentally stable grown man engaged in a sexual relationship with someone as low functioning as Britney. It seems predatory. Could he really just be an employee/handler that Britney believes is her “boyfriend”? The relationship seems fake.

    She’s at the point she seems to be struggling with basic hygeine, her hair is a rats nest and its clear she doesn’t wash her make up off on a daily basis.

  24. Yes Doubtful says:

    I feel very sad for her because it doesn’t seem like there’s anyone who is in her life that truly loves her and doesn’t want a thing in return. I wish she would retire and move away from Hollywood. I’ve always gotten the impression that she just wants to be with her boys, drink some starbucks and have a loyal boyfriend.