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How did you interpret Britney shaving her head at the time and has your opinion changed?


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Cutting ones hair is seen as an important moment in many cultures. It shows significant change mentally and that the person wants growth and / or is leaving something behind.

Barely anyone assumed anything behind her cutting her hair except for that she went crazy / wanted to hide drug abuse (the latter makes absolutely zero sense)

 

Why has she always been looked at through such a shallow lens? 

The media has always described her as a shallow artist and person, but really, it's always been the media that was too shallow to see Britney's tongue-in-cheek and self-aware presentation. 

 

 

Moments in current media where someone cuts their own hair to portray change:

Image result for sakura cuts hairImage result for wendy cuts hair fairy tail

Image result for harley quinn cutting hai

 

 

Personally I remember seeing it on Dutch news as a 7 year old child, and I very specifically remember a joke I made about her somewhere in the following months:

I was with my brother and sister (who were in their 20s at the time). My brother said he'd want to name his daughter Britney, and I said will you shave her head too when she reaches her 30s?

:pensiveney_britney_praying_ftr_for_the_record_2008_circus_vmas_thinking: It was an innocent joke and I obviously didn't understand the weight of everything that was going on. It was much too surreal for adults to grasp let alone me as a child.

My sister showed me Circus when it came out though and the rest is history

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At that time, Britney was dying her hair/adding extensions/taking them back off multiple times a week.    I thought she shaved it to ‘start again’ as her hair was extremely damaged (It honestly

I was like naaaa no way  then, omg she did it  And then  then  then... leave her alone idiots     I WAS SCARED (not for the actual shave her hair thing, more about she needed a

The world was watching her through a lens and judging her every thought. Having the train of thought of shaving your head as something done for liberation must've seemed like something no one would un

I remember I found out via a radio station then I quickly jumped onto google to see if it was true. I remember the girl who called in to the local radio station laughing at Britney.

To be honest, I didn't really understand what was going on but I knew that whatever it was, it was really intense. A lot of my life, I felt like I had to defend myself for loving her so much, or I would even be personally offended when people insulted or made fun of her. Now it seems like everyone that made fun of her that I knew in my life are  now all suddenly pro Free Britney. 

I knew she needed some time, and I knew she needed her space. I just didn't fully understand why at the time. When people talk about it now and they say things like, "I understand why Britney shaved her head" as we get to the same age as her at that time, I sometimes think it's insensitive. We don't have a direct lens on what was going on for us to claim our understanding of that very situation. 

I miss Britney so much

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I was 18 when she did it and I remember initially thinking, "that was weird" lol she really just snapped. I never thought crazy. I just thought she needed help. It was sad and a bit scary.

My opinion has definitely changed. Now, I see it less as weird but more of this woman was trying to send a message and people still didn't get it until very recently and some still don't. It was a very extreme reaction but her situation was also very extreme. Now that I'm actually older than she was when this happened, I feel awful that she was a young woman left to just flail out there so publicly and no one bothered to listen. She had the biggest platform and was screaming at people and they laughed and shoved more cameras in her face. She was trying to show she's a human who simply needed a break from being Britney Spears, Popstar. I'm just frustrated for her now. 

I wonder sometimes if she would change that moment if she could go back. It was the catalyst for a lot.

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I was kinda just horrified and saddened.  My family was doing nothing but joking about it, they didn’t understand how important she was to me as a very angry and closeted teen. She was falling apart and so was I. I felt for her then, and now as an adult I see that she was just fvcking over it and wanted to leave her life behind and start over again. Like, this is all I have left, and I’m done. They took everything from her and that was power she had in her hands. 

If you can't say I LOVE YOU, then say nothing at all...

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At the time Britney shaved her head I was 12 going on 13 years old. I reacted in the way you’d expect a spoiled preteen to and that still makes me cringe to this day. I’m ashamed to say I called her crazy, a druggie, a psycho, and cracked plenty of jokes at her expense. What’s even worse is that I was a big Britney Spears fan since Baby One More Time came out when I was a toddler. To blend in though I pretended that I hated her even though I secretly followed everything she did. I had no empathy and it took me a couple years to really see Britney as a person in a different light. I’ve since struggled badly with my own mental health in my teens and twenties and it put the whole situation in perspective, I still can’t believe that she was only 25 years old! One positive of the new documentary is that it not only shines a light on how badly the media treated Britney, it makes every one of us reflect on how we treated her as well. She really was society’s punching bag, and for what? Cutting off her hair? Asking to be left alone? Not being the perfect Barbie we wanted her to be? I can’t imagine feeling the weight of the entire world laughing at you, especially when you’re obviously crying out for help. It’s a miracle she’s still with us today and fighting for her rights. I’m really praying that this is the year it happens. Britney deserves a happy and carefree life, she has more than earned it.  

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I was in my early teens, even thought I couldn't grasp the magnitude of what was going on I could feel it was relatable.

I was suffering from bullying in school and family issues, mentally I would fall into a deep rabit hole of despair seeing what Britney was going through was relatable in that sense, even thought I couldn't fully understand the magnitude of her breakdown I understood we were both passing trough a dark time where no one understood us.

Even in that period Britney kinda inspired me, she was the only one I could relate to.

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I remember just thinking she did it so her hair couldn’t be tested for drugs because all they did was use her kids against her. I never thought crazy! Older I got I understood she just felt like everyone was poking at her and she wanted to feel free of it all. And shed the past! 

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I always assumed it was drug related.  She had child services involved with her and I always assumed she was afraid of failing a drug test and losing visitation rights after she had lost custody completely (as a former CPS social worker, I know that they test through both urine and hair follicle, which hair follicle tests going further back).  Back then the judge was quoted as calling her a “frequent and habitual user of drugs and alcohol”, so it made sense.  Everyone goes through stuff in their life and makes mistakes, I would never judge her if she was struggling with drugs or even just experimenting.  I do still believe that was why she did that, it just makes the most sense and would explain why she didn’t really explain it when she was asked about it in FTR.

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20 minutes ago, G-unit said:

I always assumed it was drug related.  She had child services involved with her and I always assumed she was afraid of failing a drug test and losing visitation rights after she had lost custody completely (as a former CPS social worker, I know that they test through both urine and hair follicle, which hair follicle tests going further back).  Back then the judge was quoted as calling her a “frequent and habitual user of drugs and alcohol”, so it made sense.  Everyone goes through stuff in their life and makes mistakes, I would never judge her if she was struggling with drugs or even just experimenting.  I do still believe that was why she did that, it just makes the most sense and would explain why she didn’t really explain it when she was asked about it in FTR.

The world was watching her through a lens and judging her every thought. Having the train of thought of shaving your head as something done for liberation must've seemed like something no one would understand (since no one did lol). Not to mention giving a non-response is easier than properly conveying your true thoughts. Who was gonna believe her anyway? They'd call her crazy for saying it.

I wouldn't be saying all of this if I didn't genuinely think Britney is like this. As seen in her personal letters, her instagram posts and in her unreleased work (and released work, actually), she's a very symbolic person that definitely likes to have meaning behind things. Could she have just been trying to avoid drug abuse charges? Maybe lol. But then why do it in a public salon in front of the paparazzi? She could've easily shaven her head in private and chosen to wear well-done wigs. Again, she purposely chose for the world to see it.

 

The way in which she did it was 100% a statement completely unrelated to her drug abuse.

Not to mention we have this symbolic but pretty direct quote: "It was, you know, 'I just don't want anybody, anybody touching my head. I don't want anyone touching my hair. I'm sick of people touching my hair."

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To me as a fan, I was one of those that was initially dissapointed by the relationship with Kevin, but on and off, I continued to follow her life, by then, through the second half of 2006, she was getting so much bad press and the paparazzi following her was so insane, it's really hard to separate the shaving of the head from the whole context she was living through. I remember there were people that said she wanted attention out of it, to me I read the statement that she wanted people to stop touching her and it made sense to me, also, I figured she always changed her hair so much, maybe she wanted to get rid of all the chemicals.

Today, being older and understanding more of the human psyche, and what enourmous stress she must have been in, going through a divorce, custody battle of todlers, and the incredible scrutiny and just plain negative media she had been dealing with her whole adult life, that had become just so incredibly nasty towards her by 2006, I look at it thinking she was going through a lot of pain, back then I was already of the "leave Britney alone" team and never stoped supporting her, but now I empathize so much more with her, and understand she was dealing with mental health issues and that society as a whole failed her at the time.

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I thought and still do think its cause of drugs. I know a lot of people think it was more related to a break down but I'm pretty sure it was drugs. She was definetly experimenting back then. I think the u underlying issues were there but she would probably never have done that if it wasnt related to drugs. Still love her but she was in and out of rehab and abused adderall. 

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Wasn't all that surprising because she actually had a backdrop for DWAD tour of being bald and her hair growing then attacking her for Overprotected at one time. There's got to be much more to it if she already knew her demise, as we've seen time after time; the countless times Britney predicted her downfall, which I'm actually not sure if anything is coincidental anymore.

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I was like naaaa no way :cheese_Britney_awkward_cringe_eek:

then, omg she did it :waitwhat_britney_lights_out_scared_um_confused_what:

And then :britstare11_britney_ftr_for_the_record_annoyed_tired_irritated_sigh:

then :sad_britney_ftr_for_the_record:

then... leave her alone idiots  :holduplisten_hold_up_listen_preach_telling_wisdom_wise: 

:sad_britney_ftr_for_the_record:
 I WAS SCARED (not for the actual shave her hair thing, more about she needed a true friend and she was super alone) 


 

 

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The older members will agree if I say that the whole world got shocked over a woman shaving her head. I got worried about her that night like never before, no because of the shaving but her eyes. She was so sad inside and all the people around her seemed not to care at all for her, just the fame, money and all that ****. 

I was a teenager but now, as a grown woman, I could suppose what Britney felt, she needed to express herself, to feel something and scream all the frustration she kept inside. When we cut or change our hair, we use to look for new beginnings or changes in our lifes and ourselves. And I’ve felt similar in  different moments of my life as an adult. 
The world got shocked and it’s one of the most relatable things of an adult, when meets chaos.

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2 hours ago, Goten21 said:

Personally I remember seeing it on Dutch news as a 7 year old child

I was also 7, I don’t remember much but I definitely remember seeing her bald on tmz with my aunt, and then seeing her in the pink wig.

I asked my aunt how her hair grew back pink and she said it was a wig and she’s on drugs.

then I definitely remember circus era my older brother and I were up laughing at the womanizer video, we found the video hilarious, we also had to sneak and watch it because she was semi nude in few scenes and being small boys we found that hilarious too lol 

but I remember seeing her on tv doing a live performance or something and she had long blonde hair again and my 8 year old brain couldn’t wrap my head around how her hair grew back lol

“Mommy I thought she was bald” :disbelief_britney_surprised_shocked_wow:

I became a Britney fan a teen (like 10 years late lol) and my best friend thought she was crazy “like who shave there head that’s not normal why do you like her so much”

my other aunt said “ you like Britney really, but she’s like so trashy and has issues” 

My dad who works in psychology things Britney is very sick and very untalented too . He says “once you have a mental breakdown it affects your mental health forever”  and he liked rubbed it in my face when she went to the mental hospital and said all the freebritney stuff sounded like a conspiracy after I told him what happened 


my response then at 16 was “well yeah, but we all have issues and everyone shaves their head what’s the big deal” :umsaywhat_adele_hmm_umm_thinking_confused_unsure:

now as an adult (20) who has mental health issues himself I truly feel sorry for Britney most definitely almost like I want to save her and protect her. I definitely understand the head shaving more so now than ever

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I was 19 and I thought it was weird and felt sad for her because everyone called her crazy immediately and she was already completely hounded by the paparazzi and media before, during and even more so right after that. It was too much to take in as a fan. Couldn't tell what was happening. I just left sad but I also thought she was up to something I didn't understand. 

Btw I had a dream about britney the same day I saw her baby one more time video for the first time when I was 12 in 1999. I dreamt she was in the baby one more time video bald! I always remember that dream. 

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I don't remember exactly. Maybe i thought she did it bc of drugs. I certainly was worried that she was chaised by paps everythere.

Today i think she did it bc she wanted and maybe bc she wanted to get rid of that blonde hair girl image.

 

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