‘I deserve to have a life’
Spears delivered an impassioned address which lasted for more than 20 minutes. After launching into her speech, she was asked by the judge to slow down and later said she wished she could stay on the phone “forever” to avoid returning to her life where she was surrounded by people who said no to her.
Spears told the court she wanted the conservatorship to end and described the arrangement as “embarrassing and humiliating”.
Referring to past Instagram posts, the singer said: “I’ve lied and told the whole world I’m okay and I’m happy.
“I’ve been in denial. I’ve been in shock. I am traumatised,” she said. “I’m not happy. I can’t sleep. I’m so angry it’s insane. And I’m depressed. I cry every day.”
Spears, a mother of two, said she wanted to marry her boyfriend and have another baby, but the conservatorship would not allow her to. She accused her conservator of stopping her from having a contraceptive intrauterine device (IUD) removed so she could get pregnant.
“I feel ganged up on and I feel bullied and I feel left out and alone,” she told the court. “I deserve to have the same rights as anybody does, by having a child, a family, any of those things.”
Spears said she felt “forced” to tour by her management. She said she spoke out against going straight onto a Las Vegas residency, and her therapist was falsely told she was not co-operating or taking her medication.
She alleged she was then put on the drug lithium – a common medicine for bipolar disorder – against her wishes and it had made her feel drunk and unable to converse.
Spears said it was her belief that the conservatorship was doing her “way more harm than good” and said she “honestly didn’t know” she could petition for the arrangement to end.
The full extent of why the court order was extended has never been made public. But Spears has maintained a public career, including a Las Vegas residency and a stint as an X-Factor judge, leading many to question the validity of the arrangement.
The singer’s testimony was eagerly anticipated by her supporters
A lawyer for her father, Jamie Spears, said he had been troubled by the singer’s allegations in court.
“He is sorry to see his daughter suffering and in so much pain,” the lawyer said in a statement read out in court. “Mr Spears loves his daughter, and he misses her very much.”