Why is Britney Spears posting THOSE naked snaps? Fans fear for pregnant star's mental health as she learns to live without conservatorship - but psychologist says singer, 40, is simply 're-living youth snatched from her'
- Toxic singer, who's pregnant with her third child, left fans fearing for her mental health after posting a flurry of naked photos to her 41 million Instagram followers
- Britney, 40, appears naked in the exhibitionist snaps, which show star covering naked breasts with her hands and using an emoji loveheart to cover her genitals
- On Sunday, Britney vented about feeling silenced during conservatorship years - which lasted 13 years - saying: 'I was a f*****g nun in my conservatorship!!!''
- Psychologist Dr Audrey Tang told FEMAIL Britney has 'aged but hasn't grown' saying she endured 'scripted' childhood and coercive control in early adulthood
- Dr Tang says her fiance, Sam Asghari, 28, is unlikely to want to advise her against posting such photos for fear he 'might emulate control of her dad'
Full frontal nude photos posted by Britney Spears to her 41 million followers on Instagram yesterday - which have sparked fears about her mental health amongst her loyal fanbase - could be a sign the star is trying to 'regain control of her lost youth', following the trauma of conservatorship, a top psychologist has claimed.
The 40-year-old star, who's pregnant with her third child by personal trainer fiance Sam Asghari, left fans fearing for her state of mind after she posted a flurry of nine photos in quick succession to her Instagram account on Monday.
The eye-opening images show Spears covering her naked breasts with her hands and using an emoji loveheart to hide her genitals. Each photo was similar, taken on holiday in Mexico before she fell pregnant, but with different filters.
Within minutes, fans had expressed their concern for the singer's mental health, saying: 'This girl she is sick, she is crying for help,' one wrote, while another said: 'I'm pretty sure that conservatorship was in place for a reason.'
Others questioned why her partner hadn't advised her against the photo dump.
FEMAIL spoke to psychologists Dr Audrey Tang and Jo Hemmings to address fans' fears, with both experts saying that after enduring an entire lifetime of control - that culminated in the 13-year conservatorship placed upon her - the star is likely to be struggling to navigate her new life.
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One of the nine naked photographs posted by Britney Spears to her Instagram account this week. Psychologist Dr Audrey Tang told FEMAIL Britney has 'aged but hasn't grown' saying she endured a 'scripted' childhood as a Disney star and then endured a life under coercive control in early adulthood
Worrying: Britney posted the shots with a simple caption, but fans had a lot more to say about the exhibitionist images, with one suggesting they were a 'cry for help'
'Aged but hasn't grown': Dr Tang suggests that it's unlikely the exhibitionism has come from a strong place, saying it's likely that the star, who is pregnant with her third child, is trying to relive her twenties when everything she did was controlled by her father Jamie
The pregnant singer captioned her first post on Monday, which contained six nude shots: 'Photo dump of the last time I was in Mexico BEFORE there was a baby inside me,' adding: 'Why the heck do I look 10 years younger on vacation.' Minutes later, three more extremely similar photos appeared.
Dr Tang, author of The Leader’s Guide to Resilience, said the exhibitionist snaps could be 'urge-surfing', finding impulsive ways to get attention from fans and fill the void left by the restrictions of the conservatorship.
Since the legal battle, which made headlines across the globe and saw Spears given back control over her finances, and medical and personal decisions, the singer has announced an engagement, her pregnancy and been vocal about how she thought her head 'might explode' at being censored by the legal restrictions put in place on her life by her father.
Spears has recently vented about feeling silenced during the years the conservatorship was in place, saying she 'felt paralyzed' by '15 years of secrets'.
'I was a f*****g nun in my conservatorship!!! The prayer of silence I've endured would possibly offend the Pope.'
The psychologist also suggested that Britney may not be 'ready to take advice from therapists' or partner Sam Asghari and doesn't have the privacy to make mistakes in a 'safe space'
Behavioural psychologist Jo Hemmings says reckless behaviour is a common trait after coercive control finally ends.
She explains: 'Having been under coercive control, whether it’s a partner or the conservatorship of a parent, people will often have one of two reactive behaviours.
'Either they become reckless, almost over-embracing their new-found freedom and make up for ‘lost time’ or they find it difficult to shake off the feeling of being controlled and may lurch into another relationship where the perceived relative safety of being confined to a degree, is still there.'
She continues: 'It seems to me that Britney rather opted for a combination of the two – she announced her pregnancy to her partner Sam relatively quickly, perhaps because it helped her feel safe and also allowed her to acknowledge that someone did find her beautiful and wonderful, just as she was.
'However, her nude photo dump on Insta, is the more reckless side of her being able to do what she couldn’t have done before, but also still needing the approval and endorsement of her fans, again showing the low level of self-esteem that she must have felt throughout her conservatorship.'
Describing how Britney is now kicking back against having much of her childhood and adulthood snatched away from her, Dr Tang agrees that the star could be trying to emulate the attention she received during the height of her pop career - but in ways that might see her mental health falter.
Britney CAN still find mental health happiness after the shackles of Jamie Spears' conservatorship
Fans fearing that Britney Spears, finally in control of her own affairs at the age of 40, might tip into freefall without the strict regime of the conservatorship should be reassured that the star can achieve strong mental health again, although it will take work, says a psychologist.
Dr Audrey Tang told FEMAIL: 'The latest photos might seem like a cry for help but I'm not sure Britney is even thinking in that way.
'She's still processing the conservatorship and her life since she was a child star - when you've been gaslit for that long, you often emerge not knowing who you are.'
Re-build: People who've been through the trauma of gaslighting can rebuild but it takes work, says Dr Tang (Pictured: Ryan Gosling and Britney Spears as child stars in The Mickey Mouse Club)
Therapy can help get her life back on track though, Dr Tang says, with the help of a technique known as acceptance and commitment therapy.
She explains: 'It's about not going over the coercive control again, but understanding why she feels the need to post these photos now. I believe Britney's still in a form of survival mode, just because the conservatorship has ended, it doesn't mean that she's stopped fighting.
'She is crying for help': Worried fans have said they're fearing for Britney after the photo dump...but behavioural psychologist Jo Hemmings said it will take time for the star to know who she really is, saying: 'She will make mistakes, but hopefully her direction of travel is a positive one.'
'If she stops fighting for a minute, and sit with her emotions, she'll recognise that the need to post such images is probably 'urge-surfing' to fill a void. Therapy is about trying to choose a different behaviour to answer the gap that's happening.
'It's not easy to get through the multitude of emotions someone might feel after being in a situation like this - it's similar with divorce - but you can find ways to begin to understand how you chose to survive and how those choices don't need to keep happening again.'
Behavioural psychologist Jo Hemmings agrees, saying: 'It will take time for Britney – or anyone else recently out of a coercive or manipulative relationship to find her balance and her sense of self, as this will be new to her and finding her way forward can be difficult. She will make mistakes, but hopefully her direction of travel is a positive one.'
Dr Tang explains: 'When you've got someone who's grown up with a very scripted lifestyle, you've got someone who's never learned what freedom is actually like.
'The problem is she can't learn to do that now in a safe space and experiment, so she's playing it all out in the public eye. And because it's Britney, the fall-out is going to be a lot bigger than it would be for anyone else. It's like a mid-life crisis times ten.'
Spears pictured with her parents Lynne and Jamie Spears in Las Vegas at the height of her pop fame; the singer is now estranged from both of her parents after a court declared the conservatorship placed upon her null and void in November last year
The pregnant star's fiance, Iranian personal trainer Sam Asghari, is unlikely to want to advise her not to post such photos, says Dr Tang, because he's been in a supportive role against her father during their relationship and is likely 'to not want to emulate the control of her dad.'
'She's grown in up in the public eye, and she's adapted her life to need that attention - if you haven't been able to get it in any other way, that's the way you do it.
'A child who knows that they succeed in something will get there parents love and it's the same sort of thing here. Britney thinks "If I post something that gets me likes, that's something that will get me attention and likes"'.
'On the issue of maturing of decisions and making choices, she's probably still in her twenties. She hasn't been able to go through any of that, she's aged but she's not grown. You can't expect someone to just grown up 20 years.
Dr Tang says that even with a crack team of therapists and psychologists around her, Britney may still not be ready to listen to them because she wants to finally be able to make her own mistakes.
Seeing double: Fans appeared to be concerned as to why Britney had posted the same image six times, with slightly different filters on each post
Concerned: Fans flocked to comment section worried about the pop star, wanting to know why she had posted the same image several times
Coupled up: Later, her fiancé Sam posted a sweet photo of them together. He sat in a chair and cradled his future wife while she wore a striped dress. He captioned it with king and queen emojis
Psychologist Dr Audrey Tang, author of The Leader’s Guide to Resilience, says Spears' exhibitionism could be a sign of her still trying to find a way to break free of her father
Estranged from both of her parents, and at war with her sister Jamie Lynn Spears - whom she has been feuding with over her tell-all memoir - the star can't rely on family in the way that most of us do, says Dr Tang.
One fan commenting on the naked photos felt as though personal trainer Asghari, her long-term partner, should have stepped in to prevent the star from posting the revealing images, writing: 'If your man had respect for u he'd never let you post half things you do! Leave some mystery…'
However, Dr Tang says it's likely to be hard for the 28-year-old Iranian personal trainer to intervene because he fears appearing controlling like her father.
She says: 'He'll be in a very awkward situation because he wants to give her a choice. He doesn't want to be the same as her dad.
'He will have been that support who she could trust and turn to - he's likely to not want to emulate the control of her father. If her need for validation and attention isn't fulfilled, then his advice, no matter how good it is, isn't going to be listened to.'
The couple are expecting their first child together later this year. Britney has two sons Sean Preston, 16, and Jayden James, 15 from her previous marriage to Kevin Federline.
Silenced: 'I was a f*****g nun in my conservatorship!!! The prayer of silence I've endured would possibly offend the pope' she wrote
Rant: In the same post she also ranted about her 13-year-long conservatorship and feeling silenced during those years
Effusive: She posted more photos in the same spot with a slightly different position later in the day while writing, 'I love you all SSSSSSSSSOOOOOOOOOO MUCH!!!!'
In November last year, after a highly publicized legal battle, Britney was finally given back control over her finances, and medical and personal decisions with the termination of ther= 13-year-long conservatorship.
She received an outpouring of support from her die-hard fans who helped start the #FreeBritney movement, which is thought to have helped free the star from her father Jamie Spears.
Yet some fans now seem concerned about the pop star's behavior on her social channel, with one writing: 'Anyone else here legitimately concerned?'
'I really wished you would stop doing this. You keep proving that bit of an odd instability exists,' another wrote.
A concerned fan added: 'Starting to think those who were in control perhaps should have stayed in control...'
'My teenage daughters said this looks forced… please please explain! This isn't normal behavior!!' another added.
One fan suggested that Britney should keep the explicit shots for an OnlyFans account, writing: 'At least make a only fans page. I love Britney but she got two big boys who can see this.'
The concerning posts came after the singer announced she was taking a break from social media on April 24.
However, the break barely lasted a day after she then shared a video of her trying on an outfit.
The singer is certainly known for quirky social media antics that have ranged from attacking her family to posting videos of her dancing and trying on outfits.
In April this year, she revealed news about her pregnancy. : 'So I got a pregnancy test … and uhhhhh well … I am having a baby,' she wrote.
Sam also confirmed the pregnancy news, referring to the popstar as a 'lioness' and sharing a painted image of two lions with their cub.
He wrote: 'Marriage and kids are a natural part of a strong relationship filled with love and respect.
'Fatherhood is something I have always looked forward to and I don't take lightly. It is the most important job I will ever do.'