Jamie Lynn Spears is, once again, speaking out about her tumultuous relationship with her parents, Jamie and Lynne, and sister, Britney Spears.
Coinciding with the release of her tell-all memoir, titled Things I Should Have Said, Jamie Lynn made a new podcast appearance on Jan. 18 to discuss her life experiences charted in the book.
Fans have largely criticized Jamie Lynn’s decision to release the memoir, arguing that she shouldn’t be speaking out on the Spears’ family’s controversial dynamics before Britney has had the chance to do so herself in light of her decadelong conservatorship battle.
Britney was placed under the legal arrangement back in 2008, leaving her life and finances to be controlled by her father and other lawyers. Denouncing the conservatorship in a court hearing last June, the singer said that she’d found its terms to be “abusive,” while accusing her mother, father, and sister of doing “nothing” to help.
Britney was freed from the legal arrangement in November 2021. While she’s taken to Instagram and Twitter on several occasions to drag her family for their silence and alleged complicity, the pop star has yet to speak out on a televised platform, recently revealing that she’s “scared” to do interviews.
Britney has most specifically condemned her sister for speaking publicly about their relationship over the years, calling her out just last week for making an appearance on Good Morning America to discuss the topic.
“I love my sister,” said Jamie Lynn in the interview, which was met with huge backlash. “I’ve only ever loved and supported her, and done what’s right by her. And she knows that. So I don’t know why we’re in this position right now.”
Despite Britney’s pleas, however, Jamie Lynn has continued to air her grievances publicly, including in a new guest appearance on the Call Her Daddy podcast.
Sitting down for an extensive conversation with host Alex Cooper, Jamie Lynn immediately detailed her father’s alcohol abuse — an issue that Britney’s lawyer, Mathew Rosengart, raised at the height of the legal battle.
The Sweet Magnolias actor explained that Jamie’s alcohol use had damaging effects on their household dynamic, noting that her mother, Lynne, was often too scared to stand up to him — something that caused them to clash a lot.
Encouraging Jamie Lynn to reflect on some of the arguments, Alex read a particular excerpt from the memoir that details a physical altercation between her and Lynne.
“We would lash out at each other. It all came to a head one day when my mom was emotionally strained and she snapped. She started hitting me with a large beaded purse that had a camera inside,” Jamie Lynn writes.
“She repeatedly swung the bag and landed several blows on my shoulders before she stopped,” she notes.
“I ran to the shopping center next door to where we lived. I used a payphone to call my brother: ‘Bryan, mom is going crazy,’” the passage concludes.
Looking back on the incident now, Jamie Lynn firstly seemed to defend her mother.
“I will say, I was particularly an exceptional asshole to my mother, a lot. And I do regret a lot of things that I probably could’ve done better to her,” Jamie Lynn explained.
“The only reason I was being mean to her was because I just wanted her to stand up for me or stand up for herself. And I think that just became all too much,” she said, adding that she would often go and stay with her brother, Bryan, who was 14 years older than her, when she didn’t want to be around her mom.
She continued, “I did feel bad for how I treated [her], and that’s very unlike my mom... I needed to get away from her for a lot of reasons.”
Jamie Lynn then revealed that while she “never really told anybody” about what had happened, she’s had conversations with her mom about it since. She then urged listeners not to send any hate toward Lynne on her behalf.
“Now, me and my mom, we obviously have talked about that. I told her I’m sharing that [in the memoir],” she said.
“I know that my family have been through some dumb ass shit... but I don’t want people to go after [my mom] and try to punish her,” she added. “That was a situation that went on between me and her. Me and her worked it out.”
The Zoey 101 alum then opened up about how difficult it was emotionally for her to revisit the experience.
“I wish people would understand... I’m still, in real time, sharing these things, and they’re not easy for me,” she said.
“It’s hurtful for me to work through this... It’s still painful and I’m still processing it, but part of the main steps is actually saying it out loud,” she continued.
“I can’t diminish my experiences no matter whether it was my mother, my sister, my brother... I have to respect my experiences, and I guess I just don’t know how to do that ‘cause I don’t wanna hurt anybody’s feelings,” she said.
Becoming visibly emotional, Jamie Lynn added that she needs to stop “protecting” people by not speaking out against them.
“It felt so hard to just exist for everyone else’s pleasure,” she said, before detailing how she had to remain silent throughout her childhood to protect her family’s “brand.”
“I was a prop to a lot of things, but at the same time I was never allowed to control my own narrative or have my own voice unless it was in line with everything,” she said.
“I was never allowed to do anything or say anything that would possibly put my sister in a bad light. And honestly, I love my sister... But guess what? Sisters are sisters... why wasn’t that just made normal from the beginning?”
Going on to address her and Britney’s relationship in more detail, Jamie Lynn said the two “never compared” each other, but “the world did.”
“Why can’t two sisters exist in their own right? We never compared each other, the world did. We never had that dynamic or that issue. My sister to this day is going to always, to me, be the most badass performer that ever walked on this Earth and nothing’s gonna change that,” she said.
“The problem was that I couldn’t be responsible for everything that happened around her and also be authentic to myself... I guess I didn’t have the courage to do it, I guess I was too scared.”
“It doesn’t matter who your sister is, or who your family member is. If something has caused you pain, nothing should diminish your experience,” she added.
Breaking down into tears, Jamie Lynn went on to detail how she’s coped growing up in the shadow of her sister’s success, noting that she’s always felt like an “afterthought.”
“My whole life I kind of felt like I didn’t matter,” she said in tears.
And refuting rumors that she’s “jealous” of Britney, Jamie Lynn insisted that she viewed her sister’s achievements as “nothing but an inspiration.”
“I got to experience watching a woman take over the fucking world. How can I be jealous of that?” she questioned.
The speculation around Jamie Lynn’s feelings toward her sister’s success — as well as the ongoing feud between the two — has reached new heights in recents weeks.
Shortly after Jamie Lynn’s controversial GMA interview aired, Britney took to Twitter to hit out at her sister and claimed she was selling a book at her “expense.”
“The two things that did bother me that my sister said was that my behavior was out of control. She was never around me much 15 years ago at that time, so why are they even talking about that unless she wants to sell a book at my expense?” Britney asked.
“Then, where the lady mentioned, ‘Why did she accuse you of doing remixes to her songs’ — I know it may sound like a silly thing to most people, but I wrote a lot of my songs. And my sister was the baby. She never had to work for anything. Everything was always given to her,” she added.
Quickly refuting Britney’s claim about her work ethic, Jamie Lynn posted a lengthy statement to Instagram maintaining that she’s built a name for herself “in spite of just being someone’s little sister.”
“I hate to burst my sister’s bubble, but my book is not about her. I can’t help that I was born a Spears too, and that some of my experiences involve my sister,” Jamie Lynn wrote. “I’ve worked hard since before I was even a teenager, and I’ve built my career in spite of just being someone’s little sister.”
Jamie Lynn’s response elicited heavy criticism from fans, with Britney herself even entering the conversation to label her sister “scum” on Twitter.
Walking back her remarks a day later, however, Britney shared another extensive post to the platform in which she appeared to extend somewhat of an olive branch toward Jamie Lynn.
“I know you worked hard for the life you have and you have done amazing!!!! But I think we would both have to agree to the fact that the family has never been remotely as hard on you as they have been on me,” she wrote.
“All I know is I love you unconditionally,” she went on. “So go ahead and say whatever you want... it's so tacky for a family to fight publicly like this!!! You say you love me... yet your loyalty is still with the people that hurt me the most.”
Again, swiftly responding on Instagram, Jamie Lynn urged her sister to call her instead of posting online so they could handle the matter “privately.”
“I have attempted many times to speak to you directly and handle this privately like sisters should, but you still choose to do everything on a public platform,” Jamie Lynn wrote. “In the meantime, please stop continuing the narrative that I haven't been there for you or that I'm making things up. I'm happy to share how many times I've reached out to you, supported you and tried to help you. This is embarrassing and has to stop. I love you."