A source tells ET that the end of the pop star's conservatorship changed the dynamics of her relationship with Asghari.
As speculation spins in the wake of the news that Britney Spears and Sam Asghari have decided to call it quits one year after they tied the knot, a source tells ET that the ending of the pop star's conservatorship had much to do with the shifting of the couple's dynamic.
Amid tabloid reports that the actor has allegedly threatened to release embarrassing information or materials about Britney unless concessions are made in their prenup that would allow Sam to get more money out of the divorce -- which he vehemently denied -- a source sheds some light on how the couple's relationship changed after Jamie Spears filed court documents to end his daughter's conservatorship.
"Britney could be argumentative at times, but also felt like Sam didn't let her do a lot of things without him," the source tells ET. "Before Britney's conservatorship ended, Sam was very supportive. Once it ended, Britney felt very free, but that eventually changed based on certain dynamics in her relationship with Sam."
Another source tells ET, "Britney felt like things shifted in her relationship with Sam once her conservatorship ended. Before it ended, Britney was more in a set routine, but once she was free, a lot changed."
"Britney wanted to embrace her freedom and felt like Sam couldn't necessarily handle that," the second source adds. "Britney will never let another person control her, and she felt like that was starting to happen again."
Britney had been under conservatorship since February 2008, when her father filed legal documents asking the court to grant him temporary conservatorship because the singer was being held at the UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles on a psychiatric hold. It was the second time that year that Britney had been placed on a 5150 hold, which allows a person (as a result of a mental health disorder, being a danger to others or themselves, etc.) to be involuntarily detained for a 72-hour assessment, evaluation and crisis intervention.
The court documents stated at the time that the "proposed conservatee" (Britney) was "unable to properly provide for his or her personal needs for physical health, food, clothing or shelter." The judge granted Jamie temporary conservatorship.
In October of that year, Jamie petitioned the court to make him a permanent co-conservator over Britney. The court approved the petition, making Jamie and lawyer Andrew Wallet co-conservators. Jamie and Andrew filed their first accounting documents in March 2009, in which it was noted they were getting payment for themselves -- and having their legal fees paid -- under the conservatorship.
The conservatorship went through various changes over 13 years, including Wallet resigning in April 2019, the star's mother, Lynne Spears, asking to gain access to her daughter's medical records, Jodi Montgomery being appointed temporary conservator of the singer's person in September 2019, and Bessemer Trust becoming co-conservator of the estate with Jamie in February 2021, having equal power over Britney's finances.
The viral hashtag #FreeBritney gained momentum following the 2021 release of the documentaries The New York Times Presents: Framing Britney Spears and Controlling Britney Spears, which cast a larger spotlight on the singer's mental health, media image and conservatorship battle with her father.
At the time, a source told ET that Sam wanted Britney to "finally be free of the conservatorship," adding that he's "one of the few people who doesn't need a chaperone to be around her."
"He has never been the type to speak out publicly in any negative way. Sam has always played ball and followed Jamie's lead, but he's finally hit a breaking point," the source said. "It seems like the documentary and the recent support coming from Britney's fans has given him the strength he needed to finally speak out."
"Sam has been faithful, loyal and by Britney's side through many difficult ups and downs," added the source. "He feels like Jamie is far too controlling and adds a layer of trouble to their relationship. In Sam's eyes, there are far too many restrictions."
Britney's conservatorship was officially terminated on Nov. 12, 2021, and ET spoke with Sam less than a week later at the Los Angeles premiere of House of Gucci.
"She's doing great, I'm great, this is the happiest time of our lives," he shared, beaming. "We're just enjoying it!"
Britney and Sam tied the knot in an intimate wedding at Britney's California home on June 9, 2022. The wedding was attended by fellow stars, including Selena Gomez, Paris Hilton, Madonna, Drew Barrymore, and Donatella Versace, who designed Britney's custom gown.
Trouble hounded the couple's marriage, from reports of a planned intervention to address Britney's mental health and alleged substance abuse issues that did not end up happening after Britney purportedly learned about it, to rumors about Britney and Sam not wearing their wedding rings in March.
TMZ first reported the news that Britney and Sam split in August. Per the outlet, Sam had moved out of Britney's Thousand Oaks home after an argument involving cheating allegations.
Of the split, a source told ET, "Britney and Sam have had ups and downs throughout their relationship. They have a lot of love for each other, but they also argue a lot over fundamental issues. Sometimes they feel as though each other's needs aren't being completely met. Recently, things took a bad turn and their arguments became more serious and real."
A separate source told ET that Britney and Sam "have had issues on and off as a couple since before they were married."
The source continued, "Their issues tend to get worse when they are away from each other and spending time apart. Britney has the tendency to feel like she isn't being prioritized by Sam at times. Their arguments have led them to become unhappy at times in their relationship. They are also on different pages when it comes to their future as a couple, which has been a point of contention."
Meanwhile, another source added, "Sam feels like he has gone above and beyond to support Britney and be there for her and it is never enough."
Later that same day, on Aug. 16, ET exclusively learned that Sam had filed for divorce.
When a source confirmed the split to ET, they added that Britney was "adamant" that she didn't cheat on Sam. "The two haven’t gotten along for a while and it finally came to an end after a major blowup," the source added.
Following his divorce filing, however, another source told ET that "Sam believes that Britney cheated on him. He believes he caught her in a lie and it caused him to be done with the relationship."
Meanwhile, a third source told ET that Britney "has not been doing well" amid the split.
"She has been denying any cheating allegations and going through a lot of emotions," the source said. "She is hurt because the situation brings up old feelings for her. This is the last thing she needed, especially after her boys moved to Hawaii, being worried about the fires there, and so on.
"She has been trying to get back on her feet and be healthy emotionally, physically, and mentally," the source added. "Britney has people by her side and her immediate circle is there for her. They are rallying around her."
While Britney has not spoken out about the divorce, Sam publicly spoke out for the first time one day after news broke that he'd filed for divorce from the singer.
Sam took to his Instagram Story to share a statement addressing the split, and wrote, "After 6 years of love and commitment to each other my wife and I have decided to end our journey together. We will hold onto the love and respect we have for each other and I wish her the best always."
"S**t happens," he continued. "Asking for privacy seems ridiculous so I will just ask for everyone including media to be kind and thoughtful."
Learn more about Britney and Sam's split below.