Abuse Allegations Against Britney Spears’ Former Psychiatrist Unlikely to End Conservatorship, Experts Say


From NBC News: “Britney Spears’ recent court testimony might have put her previous mental health evaluations under a cloud of mistrust, but her allegations of abuse are unlikely to help her gain independence without further psychological scrutiny.

Despite concerns raised about her previous evaluations, it’s unlikely that the court will throw away her doctor’s filings and release her from the conservatorship, said Scott Rahn, a California-based trust lawyer who handles estates and conservatorships . . . Spears will probably have to submit to a new psychological assessment, which she told the court she doesn’t want, Rahn said.

Allegations of abuse aren’t uncommon in conservatorships, said Tamar Arminak, a conservatorship lawyer who worked with Amanda Bynes’ parents . . . ‘It is the psychiatrist that holds, sort of, dangling the carrot: “Everybody around you is telling me you’re not complying,” “You’re not doing well,”‘ Arminak said. ‘”Therefore, I’m going to put you in inpatient treatment.” “Therefore you are going to be institutionalized.” “Therefore, things are going to change for you.” And as we know from Britney’s testimony, that’s exactly what happened to her.’

. . . Spears’ situation has highlighted a larger debate around mental health and disability rights when it comes to forced treatment and guardianships, [Ira Burnim, legal director of the Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law] said. The guardianship system is unlikely to reform or change, as ‘legal processes for people who are devalued tend not to work all that well.'”

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  1. “….: “Everybody around you is telling me you’re not complying,” “You’re not doing well,”‘ Arminak said. ‘”Therefore, I’m going to put you in inpatient treatment.” “Therefore you are going to be institutionalized.” “Therefore, things are going to change for you.” And as we know from Britney’s testimony, that’s exactly what happened to her.’..”

    What’s complying? And What’s doing well? All a persons got to do is live their life, surely?

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  2. According to this — the conservatee gets reported by her conservators to the psychiatrist and the psychiatrist is the person who inflicts the punishment for her “lack of compliance” (like say refusing to do a dance move). That makes the psychiatrist the abuser in chief. And this is okay with people. The doctor who took an oath to do no harm is the person in this system who gets paid to inflict the punishment. In that case the people who receive the abuse from the psychiatrist should not be called patients. Come up with another word, like inmate or convict (convicted of what? Convicted of needing help). What a disgusting system.

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  3. It’s a good thing this is making the mainstream media, thanks to Britney. And I’m glad I knew enough about the importance of reading and understanding contracts, when I was handed one of these satanic contracts, to not sign it.

    Truly, these ‘conservatorship’ contracts should be illegal. Since their purposes really only seem to be covering up the massive amount of, and systemic, psychological and psychiatric malpractice; and systemically stealing from – and killing – wealthy older adults.

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  4. This is now basically an ethical question, if it is allowed to lie in certain situations, e.g. the eighth commandment.
    Already in the bible this is more interpreted, as something you do on purpose with the intention to harm your next one and therefore your community. (Exodus 20/16, Levitikus 19/11, Deuteronomum 19, 16-19 etc).

    The next question is now, if the psychiatrist is part of your “community” or rather it’s enemy and of course if he or she is harmed by you claiming of having “insight”.

    I also forgot to mention before, that in order to get rid of a guardianship, I recommend to of course admit that you have had difficulties in life and a crisis.
    Now however you are much better and thank them very much in their help in this.
    This I think, is also a matter of plain courtesy.

    Regarding alcohol and drugs it is known, that it is much better in court to admit, having had difficulties, and therefore you sought help.
    Then go and be free.

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  5. I’m already seeing the backlash against Britney Spears over this. Apparently there are many people who don’t like the fact that now she’s being heard and supported.
    People defending the conservatorship, calling her immature because she wrote an Instagram caption about how she felt, people saying that the “mentally ill” are very manipulative and that unless someone has a “mentally ill” person in their family they don’t understand what a horrible situation that is… for the family.
    I’m very happy for Britney and anyone else who may ultimately be helped by this — by the new attention being given to how abusive conservatorships can be. Maybe conservatorship laws will change. As far as psychiatry and the mental health system, which are really at the root of this, I’ve lost hope for anything changing. I’ve lost hope of being heard by anyone who is actually in a position to provide help or support to me. I’m sick of it.

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  6. Please remember “therapy” alone for any age; child or adult is dangerous. It is as dangerous as the psych drugs which we know are dangerous. So, when therapy and drugs are used together which seems to be the psychiatrists, etc. protocol, the danger is staggering. It is as if the “poison label” is broadcast and magnified everywhere. Sadly, the psychiatrists and therapists and other prescribers, etc. refuse to see it and they drug and therapize the patient so he or she is blind and asleep to it. It is a tragedy we must work to reverse. I do not know if the Britney Spears issue will even make a dent into reversing this tragedy. Thank you.

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    • Rebel,
      I agree that when therapy and Psychiatry are combined, the danger *can* increase exponentially for the patient. I’ve been double-teamed by therapist/psychiatrists on many occasions. The most disturbing of which was a situation that, while I was experiencing multiple traumas (during that period of time I lost every single member of my family either through death or estrangement), the DBT therapist I was seeing came to the appointment I had with the psychiatrist (a psychiatrist that the DBT therapist had referred me to and that I paid out of pocket). The DBT therapist said to the psychiatrist, “do something!” And the psychiatrist, who already had me on multiple drugs including antipsychotics, proposed that I should go into the psych ward for an ECT consultation. I stated very clearly (I remember feeling desperate but also knowing that I had to sound sane, rational, composed to even have a chance of being heard, so I modulated my tone) that I had already had ECT years before and that I became disabled after the ECT due to short-term memory loss. I explained that the doctor who had performed the ECT and who was a close colleague of this psychiatrist (so he could have easily picked up the phone to check on my story) had stated afterward “you have borderline personality disorder. That’s why the ECT didn’t work.”. I explained about the memory loss and the disability (prior to the ECT I worked full-time in a high stress position that included a lot of overtime hours). None of this mattered. The psychiatrist, who refused to even look at me, mumbled something about ECT being done differently nowadays and that I shouldn’t have the memory loss (which of course wasn’t true. To this day ECT presents a huge risk of memory loss and other cognitive impairments). Neither one of them would listen to a word I said and they both stood firm in their position that I needed to check myself into the psych ward for an ECT consultation, which, because back then I was still brainwashed that I needed to be compliant and willing and a good little DBT patient, the next day I walked into the hospital ER and said that I was there too admit myself to the psych ward per my doctor’s orders for an ECT consultation. It was only luck that when I met with the inpatient doctor and I told him the same story that I had told the psychiatrist who made me go there, he immediately said no to more ECT.
      I think I was inpatient that time for a week or a week and a half. One day the DBT therapist came to visit me and brought me a newspaper. I sat across from her in the visitor’s room and when she saw that I was angry, she just said “why are you mad at me? I’m visiting you and I brought you the newspaper.”. She couldn’t even comprehend why I would be angry that she worked with the psychiatrist — two people who were both getting paid good money to help me — to set me up for more brain damage. A few months later, both the DBT therapist and the psychiatrist dropped me without any notice.

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