LeAnn Rimes believes her experiences as a childhood star were similar to those of Britney Spears.
Rimes, 41, broke into the country music scene at only 13 with her smash hit, Blue. Four years later, pop singer Spears, also 41, had a similar overnight breakthrough when she was 16 with …Baby One More Time.
The two celebrated immense success during their formative years. But as young adults, the singers temporarily stepped away from the limelight for the same reason. People who were supposed to protect them used them.
“I saw the Britney Spears documentary and was thinking, like, all these people that make money out of her and she has nothing to do with it,” Rimes told The Times UK. “It’s just soul-sucking. That poor girl. That poor woman, really.”
LeAnn Rimes and Britney Spears Publically Fueded With Their Fathers
LeAnn Rimes and Britney Spears notably suffered at their father’s hands. Rimes sued her dad in 1998, claiming he had stolen $7 million from her while acting as her co-manager. Spears was placed under a conservatorship in 2008, which made her father, Jamie Spears, her legal guardian. The singer fought hard to regain her personal freedoms, saying Jamie was highly controlling and used her for his own financial benefit. It wasn’t until 2021 that she was able to break free.
“Feeling like you’re never good enough is a soul-crushing state of being for a child,” Spears wrote in her new memoir, The Woman In Me. “He’d drummed that message into me as a girl, and even after I’d accomplished so much, he was continuing to do that to me. I became a robot. But not just a robot – a sort of child robot. I had been so infantilized that I was losing pieces of what made me feel like myself.”
While Britney Spears is still at odds with her father, LeAnn Rimes has since reconnected with her father. She has also begun acting and releasing new music.
“Looking back, I think my dad did the best that he could,” she admitted. “Parents managing a child is always a recipe for disaster. For me, it became a business and I ended up not having parents.”
“I don’t feel like I stepped into my womanhood till the last five years,” Rimes continued. “Learning to say ‘no’ was probably the best thing in the world. I started to realize how disappointed I felt in myself when I did things that I just didn’t want to do.”
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