For years, fans of Britney Spears have used the hashtag to call out what they see as an exploitative relationship between her and her father.
What happened to Britney? And what lessons can you learn from her situation?
In 2008, after Britney went through a very public custody battle with her ex-husband, people became concerned about her mental health.
Her father, Jamie Spears, argued in court that Britney wasn't in the right condition to take care of herself, her kids, or her career.
The court agreed to make Jamie and his associates Britney's conservators, allowing them to directly manage:
her person — what she can do
her estate — what she owns
Britney is now in a legal battle to end the conservatorship.
What It Means For Britney
Britney's conservators make decisions about every part of her life:
her access to medical care
her career moves
When Britney was making as much as a million dollars a week from her live shows in Las Vegas, her conservators took a 1.5% cut for themselves, and even asked the court for a raise!
What decisions can Britney make without her conservator's approval?
Why It's Concerning
Britney's fans think she's being exploited by her conservators for financial gain, and her celebrity friends like Paris Hilton agree.
Usually, conservators are only appointed to people with severe health conditions or advanced age.
But Britney is still young, and it's not clear that she has a debilitating condition of any kind, so it raises questions:
Are her conservators profiting from her career?
Can she trust that her conservators are looking out for her best interests?
Does Britney even need a conservator?
What You Can Learn From #FREEBRITNEY
These are all cases where someone abuses their power over another person. It's an injustice that makes victims out of celebrities and ordinary people alike.
What To Do About It
It can be risky to get involved in someone else's personal life. It's hard to know exactly what's happening behind closed doors, so be cautious and don't jump to conclusions.
But if the person is crying out for help by dropping subtle hints or openly saying they're being controlled by someone else, then it might be time to step in if it's safe to do so:
Reach out to the person and tell them you're concerned about their relationship
Listen to what they have to say and offer to help them
If you think the person is in danger, contact the appropriate authorities
As Britney and her supporters continue to fight for her conservatorship to end, reflect on people in your life who might be going through an exploitative relationship.
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This Byte has been authored by
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