In her first public statement since her courtroom testimony, the singer told her 30.6 million Instagram followers on Thursday that her social media persona had given the wrong impression and that she regretted "pretending like I've been OK the past two years."
On Wednesday, Spears called on a judge to end the conservatorship that has given her father, Jamie Spears, control of her finances, medical care, and career for 13 years.
Addressing the Los Angeles court by phone, she described the conservatorship as "abusive." Seemingly lending weight to the theories of the #FreeBritney movement in a 25-minute speech, she said she felt she had been forced to perform, was given no privacy, and was made to use birth control, take medication and attend therapy sessions against her will.
Spears has been subject to a court-ordered conservatorship since 2008, following a series of personal issues that played out publicly.
Posting on Instagram, the "Baby One More Time" hitmaker opened up about her regret that "pride" prevented her from revealing she was "going through hell."
"I just want to tell you guys a little secret," she wrote. "I believe as people we all want the fairy tale life and by the way I've posted ... my life seems to look and be pretty amazing ... I think that's what we all strive for!!!!"
The 39-year-old star continued: "That was one of my mother's best traits ... no matter how shitty a day was when I was younger ... for the sake of me and my siblings she always pretended like everything was ok. I'm bringing this to people's attention because I don't want people to think my life is perfect because IT'S DEFINITELY NOT AT ALL."
However, Spears said, pretending to be fine on social media has "actually helped."
"If you have read anything about me in the news this week ... you obviously really know now it's not !!!! I apologize for pretending like I've been ok the past two years ... I did it because of my pride and I was embarrassed to share what happened to me ... but honestly who doesn't want to capture their Instagram in a fun light!!!! Believe it or not pretending that I'm ok has actually helped."
"I decided to post this quote today because by golly if you're going through hell ... I feel like Instagram has helped me have a cool outlet to share my presence ... existence ... and to simply feel like I matter despite what I was going through and hey it worked ... so I've decided to start reading more fairy tales!!!!!"
During her court appearance, Spears said other people have controlled and exploited her throughout her life and that "I want and deserve changes going forward."
In response to her remarks, Vivian Thoreen, an attorney for Jamie Spears told CNN, "Mr. Spears loves his daughter and misses her very much."
A further court hearing is set for July 14.