US singer Britney Spears arrives for the premiere of Sony Pictures' "Once Upon a Time... in Hollywood" at the TCL Chinese Theatre in Hollywood, California
(image: VALERIE MACON/AFP via Getty Images)

Britney Spears Celebrates After Judge Grants Her Request To Hire Her Own Lawyer in Conservatorship Battle

It's the wholesome cartwheels for me.

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A judge ruled on Wednesday that Brtiney Spears can hire her own lawyer when it comes to the conservatorship that she’s been under for 13 years, according to NBC. This comes just as Samuel D. Ingham III resigned, after being on her case since 2008, and after Britney’s scathing statement describing the kind of life she’s been living under the conservatorship. The torch, when it comes to this case, is now going to former federal prosecutor Matthew Rosengart.

And while the internet, especially #FreeBritney advocates, are celebrating this small but crucial step in ending her conservatorship, the most surprising thing is the way that Britney celebrated this update about her lawyer. For years, her social media has been carefully curated by others to paint a picture full of happiness. So Britney posting her own video of her riding a horse and doing cartwheels while playing “Black Horse and a Cherry Tree” by KT Tunstall shows that small but important shifts are happening behind the scenes to give her more control of her own life.

What I also find really interesting is what this means for people with mental illness. Britney’s diagnosis isn’t something that’s been shared with the public, but we do know that, in 2008, she was hospitalized for an involuntary psychiatric evaluation. We also know that Britney has apparently been forced to take lithium, a drug used to stabilize people with bipolar disorder.

Since her conservatorship began, Britney has been restricted from doing a lot of things. Those in charge of Britney’s conservatorship, like her father Jamie Spears, chose to restrict her from being able to see friends on her own terms, ride in her boyfriend’s car, or have the ability to get married or remove an IUD and expand her family.

And the scary thing is that there are more people like Britney out there. They might not be as famous or in the public sphere like she is, but the fact remains that there are others out there who are struggling to survive under a conservatorship that no longer benefits them or helps them. And the judge presiding over Britney’s case, who has now given her access to her own lawyer, could be used as a precedent for other cases.

Britney’s situation is also really important because it shines a spotlight on those that are under conservatorships in the first place. Tons of people are keeping up to date with the #FreeBritney movement and are taking the time to listen and learn about what it means to be under this type of guardianship. That understanding could make a world of a difference for those under conservatorships and those lawyers who take on cases like this.

Finally, it’s quite obvious that Britney knows that she is fighting not just for herself. She’s fighting for people many people like her around the world, and that makes all the difference when it comes to this landmark case and makes me like Britney for more than just her music. It makes me like her as a person and want to wave my own #FreeBritney flag!

(image: VALERIE MACON/AFP via Getty Images)

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Author
Lyra Hale
Lyra (She/Her) is a queer Latinx writer who stans badass women in movies, TV shows, and books. She loves crafting, tostones, and speculating all over queer media. And when not writing she's scrolling through TikTok or rebuilding her book collection.