Britney Spears: A Look from the Inside

June 6, 2010
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Some people may think I have it all; five number one albums, six sold out tours, six Grammy’s, and star status to last a lifetime. But no one knows what is really going on underneath all of the fame and fortune. No one knows who Britney Spears really is. Being one of the most well known celebrities in the world is a lot harder than most people may think. I sure did not think it was going to be this hard ten years ago. I didn’t know what I was getting myself into. I didn’t know all of the abuse and hardship I would go through, and if I was ever going to make it through it. I feel like I have gone from one extreme to the next and through my whole journey there have been more people judging me than supporting me. I would just like everyone to know the truth. What my life has been like according to me, not the tabloids and entertainment news.

My career started out great, I couldn’t have asked for anything more. My first album reaching number one in the first week it was out? You can imagine the shock I must have been in. I sure hoped that I would get such an amazing response, but never did I imagine I would actually get it. After that first album, everyone wanted more. So I gave them more. Making other people happy with my music and performances would make me happy. Performing was something I have always loved. Since a young age I would sing and dance for my family and loved bringing a smile to their face. It is a lot easier to keep your family happy than it is to keep the whole world happy. Eventually you are going to disappoint someone out there, and not everyone is going to like you. It doesn’t take long before people start making up rumors or criticize you about everything.

Once you reach the highest point of your career, there is only one way to go from there: down. It did not take long before the paparazzi became out of control and I could not even leave my house to buy groceries. It isn’t the best feeling to know that there are paparazzi hiding in your bushes waiting for you to leave your house. I do not consider myself that interesting of a person, everyone buys groceries right? What is so special about me buying groceries? Just go to the grocery store, I’m sure you would go crazy seeing how many people there are purchasing groceries. You may think that’s out of control, but imagine the unsettling feeling I get in my stomach when I wake up to read about my mistake of a Vegas wedding as the headline of my local newspaper. Having your life talked about in weekly magazines is not something I imagine a lot of people would enjoy.

There was a long period of time when I thought people thought of me more as an object, rather than a person with actual feelings. I would find myself crying over what people thought and would say about me. When I was going through custody battles with my ex-husband, I felt like the whole world was against me. Not only was the whole world up-to-date about my custody battle, it seemed like everyone was rooting for the other team. No one stopped to think how I was feeling or even tried to relate to my situation. But who could blame them, no one really knew me. No one knew what was actually going on between my husband and me, or between my kids and me. This was probably one of the hardest things I have ever had to go through, and go through virtually alone. Of course I had my family backing me up, but even though they are the people who matter the most to me, they seemed so miniscule compared to the rest of the population.
It is hard for me to talk in depth about my breakdown, and when I reached my lowest point. You are not going to be the happiest person when you feel no one is on your side, and things just keep getting worse and worse. When you get to this point, you feel like there is nothing in the world you can do to make things better. I am sure we all know that I spent some time in rehab, and all about the incident I had in a hair salon, but what hurt me the most was when people started predicting that I was going to die that year due to my mental state. Like saying that is going to help anyone, especially me. You don’t have to like me, I know that not everyone will, but how would you feel if people starting saying that you are going to dye this year? My guess is it’s not going to make you feel very good. I hope that everyone can just put all of hatred in the past and move on. I know I have, and it’s the best decision I have made in my life.
That person, that was not who I wanted to be. So I decided to take a break and have some me time. I have not had time to myself in over seven years. In this time I was able to recover and become the person I was ten years ago. I wanted to do what I came to Hollywood to do: perform. Even if the public didn’t respond the way I was hoping, I was doing this for me this time. Who would have thought that making myself happy would make other happy too? People were able to appreciate me for me. Most were able to put the past in the past, and see that I have changed. I have become the Britney Spears everyone knew and loved.
If you asked me in 1999 where I would see myself in ten years I would have said “Still making music and performing,” but if you were to ask me what would happen within those ten years, I definitely would not have thought I would go through such a rollercoaster of emotion. Being a successful artist may be an amazing feeling, but I feel much more appreciative now that I have seen and been through the complete opposite. You never realize what you have until it’s gone, and now to have it back again, it’s the best feeling in the world.

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magic-esi This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Jun. 8, 2010 at 5:42 pm
This is a creative idea and an intriguing insight. I'm not a huge fan of Britney Spears but it was interesting to see beyond the media's perspective. And by the way, britney (the one who responded, not Spears) I also am willing to give criticism on an article, but I always give constructive criticism, not straight out insults. No offense, but your comment was rude.
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