The Dark Side Of Britney Spears' Parents

Britney Spears created an empire as one of the most successful pop musicians of her generation. The only problem? The legendary pop princess has claimed she never got to truly reap the benefits of her immense success due to the infamous conservatorship that plagued her life for well over a decade. After years of silence, the "... Baby One More Time" artist began publicly denouncing her parents, Jamie and Lynne Spears, for orchestrating an allegedly abusive, court-ordered guardianship that controlled her health, personal life, and professional endeavors for 13 years. While the conservatorship was officially terminated in 2021, drama still surrounds the bitter feud between the Grammy-winning artist and her parents, as of this writing.

Jamie and Lynne raised their children in the small town of Kentwood in Louisiana, but it was far from a picture-perfect family life. Jamie struggled with alcoholism while also dealing with his own demons stemming from his own childhood. Meanwhile, Lynne claimed in her 2008 memoir "Though the Storm" that, throughout their marriage, she'd endured "years of verbal abuse, abandonment, and erratic behavior."

On the heels of their daughter emerging on the pop music scene, Jamie and Lynne's marriage would come to an end in 2002. Alongside Britney's catapult into success came a harsher spotlight on the cracks in her own parents' story, forcing them to confront their shortcomings in front of the entire world. From the Louisiana trailer park to front page news, we're breaking down the dark side of Britney Spears' parents.

Jamie Spears' dark family history

Jamie Spears dealt with tragedy at a young age, after unexpectedly losing his mother when he was just 13 years old. In 1966, Jamie's mom, Emma Jean Spears, died by suicide on her infant son's grave. In 2021, Fay Gehringer, a friend of the Spears family and curator of the Kentwood Historic and Cultural Museum, told the New York Post, "That death had a big impact in that family. It took a big toll on Jamie."

Just four years after the tragic loss, Jamie survived another tragedy: a devastating car accident that killed his friend and football teammate, William Easley. Per Vulture, Easley was behind the wheel driving Jamie and another pal named Joseph Lee around when he missed a curve, resulting in the car breaking in two after hitting the concrete railing of a bridge.

The future father of a pop star legend clearly had a troubled childhood, with his own dad, June Austin Spears, reportedly physically abusing him and his nine other children, which were a result of his three separate wives. "These Spears men are something awful," said Jamie's half-brother, John Marks Spears, to the New York Post. "They've gotten away with so much, especially to their women, for years." John Mark went on to describe June Austin as "a monster," but added, "Nobody would say a bad word about him outside the family. Just like no one will say a bad word about Jamie around here."

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His alcoholism caused 'torment and sorrow'

Jamie Spears' longtime struggle with alcohol resulted in irreparable rifts with those closest to him. His children and ex-wife have spoken out about their memories inside their former Louisiana home, recalling Jamie as a man who spent more time with the bottle than being a father or a husband. "He spent most of my life in that cycle of ruinous behavior. His bouts of drinking always caused me periods of torment and sorrow," wrote Jamie Lynn Spears in her memoir "Things I Should've Said" (per Page Six).

Lynne Spears also got candid about the breakdown of her and Jamie's relationship, admitting in her book "Through The Storm" (per Today) that "We worked harder at controlling his alcohol consumption than we did maintaining our marriage." Jamie's issues with sobriety led to heightened anxiety in his household, which only mounted as Britney Spears shot to fame, followed by younger sister Jamie Lynn's own budding career as a Nickelodeon star.

Britney recalled early memories with Jamie in her memoir "The Woman in Me," writing, "He was an alcoholic. I was usually scared in my home. Outside wasn't necessarily heaven, either, but it was my world. Call it heaven or hell, it was mine." The "Toxic" singer claimed her father's drinking got so intense that she was afraid to get in the backseat of his car. "Dad drank until he couldn't think," she explained. "He disappeared from home for several days at a time. And when he was drunk, he got really mean."

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Did Jamie Spears have an affair with Britney's former manager?

Britney Spears made some shocking allegations against Daddy Dearest. According to court documents obtained by Radar Online, the "Overprotected" star claimed that Jamie had an affair with her former business manager Lou Taylor. In the midst of a nasty court battle over Britney's long-standing and allegedly abusive conservatorship, her lawyer Matthew Rosengart sent a damning letter to the judge handling the case.

"Admit that, when you were the Conservator of the Estate, you had a romantic relationship with Lou Taylor," the pop star stated in her letter. "Admit that, while you were Conservator of the Estate, you took an overseas trip to be baptized with Lou Taylor and charged the Estate of Britney Spears for that trip." The "Crossroads" star claims her father and Taylor got baptized by Taylor's husband Ron on her dime. "Baptized in the Jordan River — Baptized by your husband — baptized with friends," the CEO of Tri Star Sports and Entertainment Group wrote in an Instagram post at the time. In the photo, Taylor seems oddly closer to Jamie than her own husband of over three decades.

Britney's shocking accusations come after she accused her former manager of being involved in the conservatorship. In excerpts from her memoir "The Woman In Me" published by Page Six, Britney says her father "struck up a very close friendship with Louise 'Lou' Taylor, who he worshipped," before deciding to serve as conservator as her estate in 2008. Neither Jamie nor Lou have commented on the accusations. 

Britney Spears offered to buy Lynne a house to divorce Jamie

Jamie Lynn Spears dropped a bomb about her big sister being caught in between their parents' tumultuous marriage. During an interview on the "Call Her Daddy" podcast, the Nickelodeon star revealed that Britney offered to buy her mother a house if she left Jamie. "Now, looking back, like, what a weird f**king thing to do," she admitted. "It seems weird to be like, 'I'll give you a house if you divorce dad,'" she added, questioning, "Why would your kid be able to tell you that already?"

The "Southern Magnolias" star revealed that the family dynamics were completely off, with Britney's success overshadowing her parents' roles as caretakers. "My sister's paying bills, but I was a kid," the "Zoey 101" star said. "I didn't have a choice where I put my head or I slept, like what I'm going to do?" Jamie Lynn continued. While Lynne ended up going through with the plan, Jamie Lynn revealed nothing changed afterward, as Jamie slept in the house after Britney purchased the property.

Jamie Lynn claimed that Britney buying the home rubbed him the wrong way, saying, "He didn't want to live in that house because Britney had paid for it, he didn't like that."

Jamie Spears became Britney's conservator

There are many moving parts to what began Britney Spears' 13-year-long conservatorship, depending on who you ask. Several highly publicized media events preceded the controversial guardianship, including the pop star famously shaving her head in 2007. Nearly a year afterward, the star was placed in an involuntary psychiatric hold and shipped off to Cedars Sinai Hospital after she locked herself in a bathroom with her two sons, refusing to relinquish them to Kevin Federline. 

Just weeks later, after Britney was hospitalized for a second time against her will, Jamie became his daughter's conservator unbeknownst to her. Britney went silent for years, releasing albums, embarking on nationwide tours, and headlining multiple Las Vegas residencies while shielding her true feelings about the legal bind for over a decade. It wasn't until The New York Times dropped the documentary "Framing Britney Spears" that the public had any insight into the alleged abuse that the pop star endured. 

Britney released an audio recording the following year denouncing the conservatorship, likening it to a death sentence. She claimed her father prohibited her from accessing her money, verbally abused her for years, and threatened her if she attempted to leave the conservatorship. The "Toxic" singer ultimately got her wish in the fall of 2021 when the conservatorship was terminated. Jamie, however, continues to deny the allegations that the conservatorship was harmful. He told the Daily Mail: "Where would Britney be right now without that conservatorship? And I don't know if she'd be alive. I don't."

Her mother allegedly helped orchestrate the conservatorship

While Britney Spears mostly blamed her father for the conservatorship, she revealed some shocking claims about her mother Lynne's involvement as well. Taking to Instagram in a since-removed rant (via BBC), the pop star shed some light on how the court-ordered bind truly began. "What people don't know is that my mom is the one who gave him the idea," she wrote. "I will never get those years back ... she secretly ruined my life." She called her mother out directly, writing shortly after the conservatorship had ended, "You know exactly what you did. My dad is not smart enough to ever think of a conservatorship, but tonight I will smile knowing I have a new life ahead of me."

In her audio recording, the "Circus" singer claimed she was forced to enter rehab programs while her mother refused to speak out on her behalf. She added that her dire need to get out of her legal bind was blocked by her father allegedly tapping her cell phones. "I feel like [my mom] could have gotten me a lawyer in literally two seconds."

Lynne took to Instagram amidst the accusations, writing: "I have tried my best to help you out of hardships! I have never and will never turn my back on you! Your rejections to the countless times I have flown out and calls make me feel hopeless! I have tried everything. I love you so much, but this talk is for you and me only , eye to eye, in private."

Her father allegedly sent Britney to a medical facility against her will

They tried to make her go to rehab, but Britney Spears said "No, no no!" The singer revealed that under the direction of her father and team, she was sent to a mental facility without a say in the matter. "I went to one rehearsal and I said 'No' to a dance, and it was like, 'No can we do that? I want to do this,'" she remembered. "And then I just remember everything got really weird and quiet and all the directors and producers went in the back room and just spoke. And that was it. And I was like, 'Well, I don't know what's going on.'"

The singer revealed that her father later called her and told her she had to complete a rehab program and threatened to take her to court if she tried to fight. "And I remember his last words were, 'Now you don't have to go. But if you don't go, we're going to go to court, and there'll be a big trial, and you're going to lose. I have way more people on my side than you. You don't even have a lawyer,'" she recalled. 

Britney said she went through with the program begrudgingly, while the rest of her family enjoyed their time at Britney's million-dollar Destin Beach condo. The singer described her state of being at the time as "Weak as hell," adding, "And then my family is in Destin at my beach house. It didn't make sense."

Britney Spears claimed her mother abandoned her

Lynne Spears faced some bombshell allegations from her superstar daughter following the termination of her conservatorship in 2021. In Britney's audio recording, she alleged that while her mother had the power to help free her from her father, she refused to act. When the "Free Britney" movement shone a light on the controversial legal bind Britney was under, the pop star said she expected more from Lynne. 

"The whole thing that made it really confusing for me was these people are on the street fighting for me, but my sister and my mother aren't doing anything," she revealed. "It was like they secretly honestly liked me being the bad one, like I was messed up ... Otherwise, why weren't they outside my doorstep saying, 'Baby girl, get in the car, let's go?'" she asked.

Lynne refuted her daughter's claims, however, posting screenshots to Instagram of texts in which she allegedly advised her daughter on health matters. "Britney, I have all the 'whole conversations' as well!" she pleaded. The "Through the Storm" author also commented on her daughter's Instagram post in which she publicly called out her family.  "I'm sooo sorry for your pain! I have been sorry for years! I love you so much and miss you!" she wrote. "Please unblock me so I can speak to you in person! Britney, deep down you know how much I love and miss you! I apologize for anything and everything that's hurt you!"

He allegedly spied on his daughter

Britney Spears' attempts to get out of her conservatorship were monitored by her own father. At least that's what the singer claims to be true, along with a former member of Jamie's and a former FBI agent. A whistle-blower named Alex Vlasov broke the news to The New York Times in 2021, likening the security and surveillance that surrounded Britney to that of a prisoner. Vlasov was the executive assistant and operations and cybersecurity manager for Black Box, the security firm contracted by Jamie to be in charge of Britney. The former executive assistant claimed the pop star's phones were tapped and her text conversations were mirrored onto a separate iPad at Jamie's request. "Her own phone and her own private conversations were used so often to control her," Vlasov admitted. 

His claims are similar to that of former FBI agent Sherine Ebadi, who said in court documents obtained by Us Weekly that he "went so far as to surreptitiously record and capture his daughter's most private communications, including attorney-client communications with her prior court-appointed attorney and private conversations in her bedroom." Jamie denied the claims against him, with his attorneys denouncing the allegations.

As of the time of writing, Jamie and his daughter are set to go to trial over the controversial conservatorship. The claims of illegal surveillance will not be reviewed, however, as Britney's lawyer Matthew Rosengart did not file a lawsuit against the alleged illegal surveillance before the statute of limitations passed in 2022.

Britney Spears claimed her dad forced her to take medication

Jamie Spears came under fire in 2021 after his daughter claimed he didn't say a word after she was forced to take medication against her will. During a court hearing in 2021, Britney Spears claimed a therapist began to give her lithium pills after she refused to perform a new show during her Las Vegas residency. "He took me off my normal meds I've been on for five years. And lithium is a very, very strong and completely different medication compared to what I was used to," she admitted. While she tried to talk to Jamie about the side effects, he reportedly refused to budge and told her she would be sent to a rehab facility after failing a psych examination.

The singer also alleged she was forced to stay on birth control against her wishes. Shortly after the allegations, Jamie petitioned the court to examine his daughter's claims. "Either the allegations will be shown to be true, in which case corrective action must be taken," wrote his attorneys, in court documentation obtained by CNN, "or they will be shown to be false, in which case the conservatorship can continue its course." Months later, the conservatorship was terminated. 

Britney doubled down on the claims in her book "The Woman in Me" (per The New York Times), writing that after her conservatorship began, her freedom ended. "Security guards handed me prepackaged envelopes of meds and watched me take them ... Everything was scrutinized and controlled. Everything," she claimed. 

Britney Spears' father pocketed millions being her conservator

While Jamie Spears and his team of attorneys claim Britney Spears' former conservatorship served her best interests, that becomes questionable when finance reports show the father made several millions of dollars as the head of her estate. The Spears patriarch was racking in a pretty penny being in charge of his daughter — making $16,000 a month as a conservator as well as a split on her gross tour revenues. Jamie took a 1.5% cut out of the gross sales for her four year-long Vegas residency, earning him an estimated $2 million total, according to Forbes. Financial statements prepared by the "If U Seek Amy" star's attorney report that Jamie's management company made nearly $500,000 each year during the 13 years of the conservatorship, amounting to over $6 million total for the duration of the legal bind. 

Britney made it clear in court that she feels she hasn't been able to reap the success she so rightfully earned over her impressive career. "Considering my family has lived off my conservatorship for 13 years, I won't be surprised if one of them has something to say [against ending my conservatorship]," she said during a hearing in 2021 (per Forbes). "I just don't like feeling like I work for the people who I pay." The pop star not only paid her father to be her conservator against her will, but she has also paid thousands (possibly millions) in legal fees for her and her father over the conservatorship battle. 

The singer hopes her parents 'burn in hell'

In the wake of her conservatorship being terminated, Britney Spears launched into several Instagram rants calling out those closest to her. While blood may be thicker than water, she seemingly couldn't care less about the relatives that she said abused her. "Sorry I will never forget because of the pain and the difference in being out of my head clear moving my feet ... it's only been 10 months since the conservatorship has ended ... I wouldn't wish that kind of pain on anyone!!!" she wrote in a since-deleted 2022 Instagram post (via Insider).

She attacked Jamie and Lynne for prohibiting her from drinking coffee and allowing her to feel like a shell of herself for the entirety of the legal agreement. "It's extremely hard for me to accept the fact that my family did that to me ... it will be hard for me for the rest of my life," she explained. "I will say it loud and proud ... I pray you both burn in hell." She also noted that her family should all be in prison for the alleged abuse. 

As for Jamie's response to his daughter's social media posts and her 2023 memoir "The Woman in Me," a source close to him told TMZ: "Jamie's not sweating what Britney has to say about him in her new book, 'The Woman In Me,' because she's already trashed him both in court and on social media, once saying she hoped he'd spend the rest of his life in jail."