"Her brave account of personal struggles is not just a tale of a pop icon but mirrors the untold stories of countless women who battle mental health issues in silence," said Megan Rafuse, therapist and co-founder of Canadian online mental health practice Shift Collab, in a written statement to Yahoo Canada.
In the memoir, Spears shared details about her conservatorship, her relationship with her family and the postpartum depression she experienced after giving birth to her two sons, Sean and Jayden.
"In a society where women, especially those in marginalized communities, are often shamed or silenced when they attempt to share their pain and trauma, Britney's narrative serves as a rallying cry," said Rafuse.
"It underscores the urgent need for a cultural shift towards openness, understanding and empathy around women's mental health."
Rafuse shared her insights about how the memoir relates to women who are battling mental health issues in silence.
What are the barriers preventing women from discussing mental health struggles?
Rafuse explained that in the past, women's mental health has been viewed as problematic.
"We've often heard women being known as too emotional, or what we know as hysterical," said Rafuse.
"It's like an unexplained mental illness. But it was framed as 'this is a woman's problem'... that women don't have control over their mental wellbeing and are too dramatic."
Until 1980, hysteria was a formally studied psychological disorder that could be found in the American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, according to McGill University's website.
"It's really important that when we think about how we're talking about Britney Spears... we recognize that not only is this a conversation that's happening right now, but it's one that is predicated on the treatment of women throughout history... which places us at an innate disadvantage," said Rafuse.
She explained women's mental health concerns are commonly dismissed. When a woman brings up their concerns to their doctor, they're too often told things like "maybe it's just related to work stress."
That's true even for celebrities like Spears. Once they share their stories or disclose any kind of mental health diagnosis, Rafuse said "we see them being judged."
Spears' memoir looked at several moments in her life, including her relationship and breakup with ex-boyfriend Justin Timberlake, the abortion she had with the former NSYNC star in her teens and when she lost her virginity.
But as the public drew major attention to these life events from 20 years ago, Spears opened up in a statement on X, formerly known as Twitter, clarifying her intentions with her book and saying she has "moved on."
Rafuse said for many women, there's a fear of sharing that comes from the idea people will misunderstand or judge them.
For example, if a woman tells their boss they're struggling with anxiety, they might fear their boss may think they're not going to be able to perform their job. Other times, a woman may share her mental health struggles with family and friends only to be told to "toughen up."
"A lot of the barriers not only stem from the past and what we learned in terms of what is safe to share around our mental health, but we're also seeing women in the media being shamed for speaking out about their own mental health, which for me as a woman, makes me question, am I safe to share too?"
How can women navigate their unique mental health journeys?
For many people, Rafuse said mental health challenges are the result of situational factors and lived experience that can predispose people to mental illness.
In Spears' case, for example, she was placed under the conservatorship of her family, lost autonomy over her life, had a grandmother who died from suicide and she struggled with postpartum depression.
"We really need to be mindful of how her early childhood and lived experience shaped her ability to cope with all of the stressors that come from a career as a celebrity," said Rafuse.
While many women might not relate to being a celebrity, Rafuse said women of all backgrounds have their own struggles that might affect them mentally. That may include things like postpartum depression or trauma from early childhood, which therapy can provide tools for.
"I really believe that changing the narrative around women's mental health is what can help to make society healthier as a whole," said Rafuse.
What advice do you have for those inspired by the memoir and have a desire to share?
Rafuse said it can be scary for women to share their mental health struggles with others because it might feel like they're being performative.
"There's tons of feelings that we have to be perfect in order to share on social media," said Rafuse.
"My advice is always, if you have something to share, go for it. By changing the dialogues and sharing your lived experience, you can help so many people."
In her memoir, Rafuse said Spears decided to write about her experiences to own the narrative, which is a concept used in psychotherapy that seeks to help people feel more empowered.
According to GoodTherapy, "throughout life, personal experiences become personal stories. People give these stories meaning, and the stories help shape a person's identity. Narrative therapy uses the power of these stories to help people discover their life purpose. This is often done by assigning that person the role of "narrator" in their own story."
"We get to own stories and the stories we tell ourselves in the world about our lives. It can be really empowering for women when we decide to stand up, speak out and own our own narrative," said Rafuse.
She added women need to keep in mind they can't control how people are going to react to what is being shared, but they can control the kind of people they're surrounding themselves with who can offer support
"I say it takes courage to speak up and ask for what you need, but the more that we do it as women, the more we help the future generations of women feel more confident and comfortable in changing the dialogue around mental health."