Fans worried about singer’s mental health


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After Britney Spears took a sudden break from her Las Vegas show in January and then reportedly checked herself into a mental health facility earlier this month, some fans have been asking what’s going on with the singer. Or, what’s really going on?

A #FreeBritney hashtag has popped up, and fans have asked on a Twitter thread and on the “Britney’s Gram” podcast whether the 37-year-old pop superstar really consented to the treatment. They also wonder whether it’s still necessary for her to be under a mental health conservatorship, which has been overseen by her father since 2008.

Conspiracy theories? Hysteria? Is Spears’ really OK?

A PDA-filled Instagram post from her boyfriend, Sam Asghari, would seem to tell fans they have no reason to be concerned as she undergoes treatment. The post shares a video of him with Spears, giggling, working out and dressed up to go out, People reported.

Spears’ ex-husband Kevin Federline, with whom she shares sons Sean Preston, 13, and Jayden James, 12, has also commended her decision to seek what’s been called an “all-encompassing wellness treatment,” People reported.

“Kevin commends Britney for recognizing that she needs to take a step back and that she is taking reasonable steps to dealing with her situation in a responsible way,” Federline’s attorney said in a statement, People reported.

Then again, Spears’ mother, Lynne, appeared to lend her support to fans’ fears that something isn’t right with the situation, Page Six reported.

Lynne Spears cryptically liked an Instagram comment in which a fan wrote, “I really hope you are supporting Britney in trying to end (her) conservatorship. I really hope your ailing ex husband isn’t keeping your daughter somewhere against her will.”

According to Page Six, Lynne Spears also liked another comment in which the person urged people to listen to a “special emergency episode” of the “Britney’s Gram” podcast, which claims that the “Toxic” singer entered the mental health facility against her will.

On the podcast, hosts Barbara Grey and Tess Barker revealed a voicemail from someone claiming to be a former member of Spears’ legal team, Newsweek reported. The unnamed caller said that Spears had been held in a facility since early January, with no idea about when she would be released.

The caller said that Spears had not been taking her medication, which caused her father, Jamie, to pull his support from her Las Vegas residency in early January, Newsweek said. The report added that no one from Spears’ team responded to a request for comment on her current situation.

On Jan. 6, Spears took to Instagram to say she was going on an indefinite work hiatus to help her 66-year-old father recover from a life-threatening illness. Her father had been rushed into emergency surgery two months earlier after his colon spontaneously ruptured. “It’s important to always put your family first,” Spears wrote, “that’s the decision I had to make.”

Under the conservatorship, Jamie Spears is in charge of many aspects of his daughter’s life, including her medical care, career, finances and purchases, from her trips to 7-Eleven to her spending on clothes, cars and real estate. He also can say whether or not his daughter can marry again.

A judge ordered the conservatorship in 2008 after the singer embarked on a period of self-destructive behavior after she filed for divorce from Federline in 2006. Such a legal arrangement is typically used to protect the old, the mentally disabled or the extremely ill, according to the New York Times. Jamie Spears and attorney Andrew Wallet were named co-conservators.

Spears’ conservatorship has remained in place, even though the singer appears to be healthy and high-functioning, embarking on concert tours and performing in Las Vegas. It has been reported that the conservatorship remains in place because it allows Spears to focus on her singing, her sons and her health, instead of having to deal with her estate or the business side of her career, E! News said.

But a fan Twitter thread has raised concerns about how Spears’ conservatorship has been managed.

The thread also shared links to articles, including a 2016 New York Times story, that question whether the conservatorship was still necessary.

“While the conservators are widely credited with rescuing Ms. Spears’s career — and her life — her apparent stability and success could belie the need for continuing restrictions,” the New York Times said.

A BuzzFeed News report, titled “What is seriously going on with Britney Spears,” said the singer seemed to “go missing” after her Jan. 6 Instagram post. There have been a few possible sightings, including a photo of Spears at the wheel of a Mercedes in an In-N-Out drive-thru in January, BuzzFeed News reported.

Around the same time that Spears reportedly entered a mental health facility, she took to Instagram to share an inspirational message and to say “We all need to take time for a little ‘me time.’ :)”

Last week, Entertainment Tonight reported that Spears had been allowed to leave her mental health facility to visit a hair salon. But the report added that she would return to the facility as she’s still in treatment.

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