5 of Britney Spears’ biggest revelations in tell-all memoir ‘The Woman In Me’
Britney Spears is ready to share her story in her new, tell-all book The Woman In Me, as she reveals the truth about pop superstardom, her high-profile relationships, and life under a conservatorship.
In the time since, she’s had magical highs, experiencing freedom for the first time in more than a decade, marrying her partner, actor Sam Asghari, and returning to music with her “Hold Me Closer” collaboration with Elton John.
Yet, there have also been devastating lows. She’s divorcing Asghari after just a year of marriage, has suffered a miscarriage, lost contact with her sons Sean and Jayden, and publicly feuded with her sister Jamie Lynn Spears.
In The Woman In Me, 41-year-old “Womanizer” hitmaker Britney is expected to reflect on everything that’s happened to her in the past few years, and the events that have led her to where she is now, from her Disney beginnings to her very public mental health breakdown in 2007.
Following shared excerpts and leaked segments, these are five of the biggest revelations from the memoir so far as it hits shelves today (24 October) via Amazon, Waterstones, Bookshop.org and Barnes & Noble.
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Britney had an abortion after falling pregnant during Justin Timberlake relationship
Arguably the most high-profile relationship of Britney’s life so far was with fellow pop superstar Justin Timberlake, between 1999 and 2002. The pair’s split sparked a media frenzy, with both parties releasing break-up tracks about the other – Britney’s “Everytime”, and Timberlake’s “Cry Me A River”.
In the first official excerpt from The Woman In Me, shared with People, Britney revealed that she got pregnant during the relationship but Timberlake “wasn’t happy” about it, and encouraged her to get an abortion.
“For me, [the pregnancy] wasn’t a tragedy. I loved Justin so much. I always expected us to have a family together one day. This would just be much earlier than I’d anticipated,” she writes.
“But Justin definitely wasn’t happy about the pregnancy. He said we weren’t ready to have a baby in our lives, that we were way too young … I don’t know if that was the right decision. If it had been left up to me alone, I never would have done it. And yet Justin was so sure that he didn’t want to be a father.”
Britney shaved her head in 2007 to “push back” against people commenting on her body
Britney shaving her head is the moment that has come to define her mental health breakdown in early 2007. At the time, Britney had recently split from husband Kevin Federline and was engaged in a public custody battle for sons Sean and Jayden. Her aunt, Sandra, had also just died from cancer.
However, Britney has revealed that the main driving force behind her decision to shave her head was to “push back” against those who had “eyeballed” her.
“I’d been eyeballed so much growing up. I’d been looked up and down, had people telling me what they thought of my body, since I was a teenager. Shaving my head and acting out were my ways of pushing back,” she writes.
However, she also added that she “was out of [her] mind with grief,” when she attacked a paparazzi’s car with an umbrella, not long after she shaved her head.
“With my head shaved, everyone was scared of me, even my mom,” she adds. “Flailing those weeks without my children, I lost it, over and over again. I didn’t even really know how to take care of myself.”
Britney reveals the exact moment she found out about the #FreeBritney campaign
Long before the excruciating details of the conservatorship came to light, Britney’s fans had campaigned for her to be released from it, following a string of suspicious career choices – from her seeming absence on her own 2013 album Britney Jean, to the cancellation of her 2019 Las Vegas residency Domination.
The social media campaign, led by the hashtag #FreeBritney, received worldwide attention in 2020, being discussed on major talk shows and endorsed by celebrities including Paris Hilton, Adele, Ariana Grande, Miley Cyrus, and Cher.
However, Britney has unveiled that she first heard of the campaign in 2018, and it meant the world to her.
Britney writes that in late 2018, she had to spend time at a Beverly Hills rehab facility and seek mental health treatment. It was here that a nurse reportedly showed her videos of fans criticising the conservatorship and demanding she be freed.
“They kept me locked up against my will for months,” she writes. “I couldn’t go outside. I couldn’t drive a car. I had to give blood weekly. I couldn’t take a bath in private. I couldn’t shut the door to my room.
“[The #FreeBritney movement] was the most amazing thing I’d ever seen in my life… I don’t think people knew how much the #FreeBritney movement meant to me, especially in the beginning.”
Britney tried to tell the world about her conservatorship long ago
Britney has spent the past few years being admirably honest about the mental and physical impact of the conservatorship she was under for 13 years. Yet, in her memoir, she reveals that she tried to speak about it in 2016 on a UK talk show, according to The Sun.
“I even mentioned the conservatorship on a talk show in 2016, but somehow that part of the interview didn’t make it to the air. Huh. How interesting,” she writes in the memoir.
Elsewhere in the memoir, Britney recounts feeling like a “child robot” under the conservatorship, during which her father Jamie controlled her finances, her medical care, and her physical freedom. At one point, she alleges her father said to her: “I’m Britney Spears now”.
“The conservatorship stripped me of my womanhood, made me into a child. I became more of an entity than a person onstage,” she writes in the book. “I had always felt music in my bones and my blood; they stole that from me.”
Britney is unlikely to return to music any time soon
Britney’s “Hold Me Closer” collaboration with Elton John, which came out last year, was the first new music project she’d worked on since 2016 album Glory. Yet despite dipping her toe back in, she’s not ready to make a full music return.
“Pushing forward in my music career is not my focus at the moment,” she writes in the memoir. “It’s time for me not to be someone who other people want; it’s time to actually find myself.”
She hammered the point home in a recent Instagram post, in which she took aim at the media for using the memoir for headlines. “I don’t like the headlines I am reading… that’s exactly why I quit the business four years ago,” she wrote.
“Most of the book is from 20 years ago. I have moved on and it’s a beautiful clean slate from here.”
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