Britney Spears‘ sons are happy that their mom was released from an onerous 13-year conservatorship last year after a long fight. But the boys’ father, Spears ex-husband Kevin Federline, isn’t so sure. “Both of them were super happy for her,” Federline said in a 60 Minutes Australia interview in which he discussed his feelings about the court-ordered arrangement in which Spears’ personal and financial needs were determined by her estranged father, Jamie Spears, as well as a legal team after a mental health crisis in 2008.
“Because it’s not always about what’s right, it’s about ‘this is what mom wanted,’ you know, what mom got,” Federline added, stressing that he wasn’t necessarily in full agreement with the decision to end the conservatorship in November of last year. Federline, who was married to Spears from 2004-2006, said that nothing could have prepared him to deal with the fall-out from his ex’s conservatorship and the strain on their co-parenting arrangements.
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But, “I had a job to do and that was my kids,” said the father of six who shares sons Sean Preston, 16, and Jayden, 15, with the “Hold Me Closer” singer. Federline said he did the best he could to explain the conservatorship to the young boys and let them know that their “mom needed help.” The interview included a recent clip of a interview with Jayden, in which he said he felt his grandfather, Jamie Spears, did the best he could to help Britney, with Federline stressing that it was important to him to retain a relationship with his extended family.
“I wasn’t involved in any of it,” he said of his reportedly non-existent role in the conservatorship. “So I really don’t know how the conservatorship came about. I don’t know who’s decision it was… All I know is that you have a family that is worried about their daughter and trying to do whatever they can to help her.” Asked if Jamie Spears’ action saved his daughter’s life at the time, Federline was unequivocal: “100% I feel like he saved her back then.”
A spokesperson for Spears had not returned requests for comment on the 60 Minutes Australia interview at press time.
The former dancer/rapper said he chose to “dim” his public light 15 years ago in order to focus on the children (“the boys, the boys, the boys”) and make sure they had a healthy relationship with their mother and the rest of the Spears family.
The profile also delved into the early days of the Federline/Spears love affair, with Kevin saying that initially it was “amazing,” describing how the couple listened to each other and told jokes, all “magnified by 100,” however, due to Britney’s global superstardom. “It was really different until… it wasn’t,” he said, while offering some scant details about the secret wedding the couple pulled off to avoid the intense paparazzi glare.
Federline said he was shocked when Britney filed for divorce, adding that “nothing else mattered” to him than making sure he got 50% custody of the boys as the couple split amid Spears’ public battles with mental health. “I’m not the person that will take money over family… I was mortified for her. I really was for a long time,” Federline said of what it was like to watch his ex struggle.
The 60 Minutes piece noted that the 50/50 custody arrangement the couple reached changed several years ago after Sean Preston and Jayden “weren’t always happy living at their mum’s home,” with a court awarding Federline 70% custody in 2019, at which point the boys reportedly moved in with him full time.
Reacting to a scathing 22-minute voice note Spears released last week lashing out at her family for the pain she said she suffered under the conservatorship, Federline revealed that the boys have not seen their mother in “several months.” The news came in the wake of a recent ITV interview in which Jayden lamented that he and Preston would have attended their mom’s wedding to Sam Asghari, but that it would have felt weird to do so when much of the extended Spears family was not invited because of the rift caused by the conservatorship.
“I 100% think this can be fixed. It’s just going to take a lot of time and effort. I just want her to get better mentally. When she gets better I really want to see her again,” Jayden said in ther interview, while adding a personal message to his mom: “I love you a lot, I hope for the best for you. Maybe one day we can sit down like this and talk again.”
After years of their private life staying out of the public eye, Federline defended his decision last month to post — and then delete — an embarrassing video of Spears arguing with her sons. “I’ve spent the better part of my adult life turning the other cheek in response to attacks on me,” he said. “When our children are attacked, I found the need to set the record straight to be overwhelming.”
Saying the couple’s children are “really, really sweet kids… good human beings,” Federline said he understands questions about why he’s speaking out now after years of staying quiet. “I want my sons to have the closest thing to a normal life that they can possibly have, because it will make them better people,” he said. “I think it’s possible.”
Watch the full interview below.