Jamie Lynn Spears is getting ready to speak out.
In January 2022, the 30-year-old will be releasing a memoir titled “Things I Should Have Said: Family, Fame, and Figuring It Out.” In the book, the “Zoey 101” alum will discuss the struggles she endured as a teen star who suddenly became a teen mom.
“A single day had elapsed before Daddy’s anger brought out the sense of dread everyone felt about my situation,” Spears wrote. “Once Momma and Daddy told my team, things spiraled out of control pretty quickly. When I walked in, Daddy, Bryan, and Momma were in the house and [a member of] my financial management team was on the phone.”
“There was a whole lot of fighting going on between everyone involved,” she continued. “The entire Spears team was already caught up in my sister’s PR difficulties, and everyone around me just wanted to make this ‘issue’ disappear. My family and management pulled me out of school until they could figure out what to do next. They took my smartphone away, fearing the news would get out, and insisted that no one share any information with anyone, especially the press. My daddy and I stopped speaking and the tension was terrible.”
According to Spears, the then-teen isolated herself in her room as her family and team discussed what the future held for her.
“Everyone had their own opinion about what was best for me,” she recalled. “One person after another — and there were many — came to my room trying to convince me that having a baby at this point in my life was a terrible idea. There was lots of chatter, but none of it felt right to me.”
Spears noted how everyone told her that becoming a mother at such a young age would destroy her blossoming career.
“It will kill your career,” she said. “You are just too young. You don’t know what you’re doing. There are pills you can take. We can help you take care of this problem. Think about what you’re doing to your family. Doesn’t the family have enough to deal with? I know a doctor. There are procedures that remedy mistakes like this. You don’t have to do this. He’s a louse. He’ll never be able to care for the baby or you. Jamie Lynn, don’t make a mistake you’ll regret for the rest of your life.”
But for Spears, the decision was clear.
“I’ll never forget that last plea – of making a mistake I would regret – because it reinforced my decision to have my baby,” she wrote.
Still, that didn’t stop the ongoing discussions. And Spears said everyone believed terminating the pregnancy “would be the best course of action.”
“I will never forget when [a member of my team] stood up for me and said, ‘Y’all can’t force her to abort the baby,’” Spears wrote. “She was the first and only person on my team to show any support for my desire to keep my baby. The next option was for me to go to Mercy Ministries, a home for unwed mothers in Tennessee, where I could eventually give up my baby for adoption. Daddy and I fought, slinging words and tossing insults. He grabbed me by the shoulders and held on tightly in the hopes of bending me to his will. I got in his face and yelled, ‘NO! I won’t go.’ I couldn’t deal with any of them. I ran away from them, panting with rage.”
Spears described how her home “felt like a prison” as she attempted to hide from the world without a smartphone. She alleged that her team was so determined to hide her pregnancy from the public that they suggested keeping the news a secret from her older sister, as she was faced with her own public woes.
“I needed her more than ever and she wasn’t able to help me in my most vulnerable time,” said Spears. “Britney’s condition was spiraling into something more concerning. They were concerned her instability at that time made her untrustworthy. I went along with what my team told me to do because I was a minor and didn’t want to create any more issues. Britney learned of the pregnancy when the article was released. To this day, the hurt of not being able to tell my sister myself lingers.”
However, the situation only worsened when word got out that the teen actress was pregnant. Spears said that she attempted to hide from the paparazzi by keeping a low profile. She noted that her communication with Britney “was nonexistent” because the singer was “in the midst of her own crisis.”
In October, Spears announced she was writing a book.
“I felt a strong conviction to share my story, but there was a lot of personal work and healing that had to happen before I could share my truth the proper way,” she shared on Instagram. “I’ve spent my whole life believing that I had to pretend to be perfect, even when I wasn’t, so for the first time I am opening up about my own mental health because this process challenged me to have to be painfully honest with myself, and face a lot of hard things, that I normally would have just glossed right over like I was taught to.”
“I owe it to myself, my younger self, and to my daughters to be an example that you should never edit yourself or your truth to please anyone else,” Spears added.