From The Mickey Mouse Club castmates to ’90s pop princess rivals, Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera‘s decades-long feud seems to be reigniting after an Instagram post gone wrong on Spears’ behalf.
The newly freed pop icon shared an image of a Rodney Dangerfield quote on her Instagram that read “I found there was only one way to look thin: hang out with fat people.” The quote is problematic to begin with, but Spears’ added commentary contributed to what the public is largely perceiving as body shaming.
In the caption, Spears spoke out on the restricting factors of her 13-year conservatorship, writing, “I wish I could have chosen the nannies for my children… my dancers… I mean if I had Christina Aguilera’s dancers I would have looked extremely small.”
While she’s valid in feeling resentful toward the conservatorship and choices she was unable to make for herself, Spears put herself in hot water by directly calling out Aguilera and implying her dancers being bigger-bodied was advantageous for those with smaller bodies. Spears’ caption continued, ” I mean why not talk about it ?? Don’t you think my confidence would have been a bit better if I could choose where I lived, ate, whom I called on the phone, dated and who was on stage with me !!!
It’s hard sometimes now I see how much of my womanhood was stripped away at that time and every person sat back and didn’t say a thing !!! Anyways … I will be here talking bout things people NEVER talked about !!!”
Fans did not take kindly to Spears’ post, with commenters writing “What did Christina’s dancers ever do to deserve this,” “This is so wrong, there is so much more to life than looking thin,” and “Britney we love you — but this post is harmful to others who live in bigger bodies and people who experience ED. We know you’ve been hurt. But let’s not hurt others in our healing.”
Aguilera, along with Selena Gomez and Paris Hilton, was noticed to have unfollowed Spears in the wake of the post. Spears then shared another post in an attempt to clarify her intentions, writing, “By no means was I being critical of Christina’s beautiful body, it is what it is !!! I flew to see her show once and the main thing I noticed was the difference of our people on stage !!!”
Spears continued, “By no means did I even mention Christina, look at my post !!! I was inspired by her show and she is a beautiful woman of power… Thank you @xtina for inspiring me !!!”
She then circled back to the effects of her conservatorship, explaining “To be honest, I’m not trying to be critical of anybody. What I posted is a projection of the insecurities I deal with all the time as a result of how my parents and the media have treated me… I would never intentionally body shame anybody because I know what it feels like…
I struggle with this because of how I feel about myself, not because I hate how anybody looks… I feel like my family knew I was insecure and people were trying to purposefully feed into this insecurity by not letting me have a choice in the people who were on stage with me.”
She closed with a sincere statement: “I appreciate you all being understanding with me as I figure out this new life I’m living !!!”
We can only imagine the severity of the horrors Spears faced during her conservatorship, and as she adjusts to a life she can now control, it’s important that she’s supported while also being held accountable for problematic behavior. At a time when cancel culture is running rampant, Spears deserves grace as she recovers from the trauma of the past decade. Body shaming is definitely not the vibe, and hopefully this experience will help Spears learn and grow.
Before you go, click here for more celebrities who’ve spoken out about being body-shamed.