For several months now, Britney Spears' fight to end her conservatorship has dominated tabloid headlines and inspired quite a few in-depth discussions in more mainstream media outlets.
Thankfully, after a legal battle with her father that seemed like it would never end, Britney now appears to be on the verge of regaining her freedom.
The situation has led to greater awareness of the potential for abuse in conservatorships, and the likelihood that a young celebrity could be exploited by those who claim to have her best interests at heart.
One situation that's drawn numerous comparisons to Britney's is that of former actress Amanda Bynes.
Bynes, as you may recall, gained a massive following during her years on Nickelodeon, and there was a time when it looked like she would be one of the few child stars to successfully to navigate the difficult transition to adult fame.
Sadly, Bynes' struggles with addiction and mental health issues derailed her career early on.
And in 2013, her parents were granted a conservatorship that gave them control over her finances and many other aspects of her life.
To be fair, there have been no credible allegations of abuse in her case, as there have been in Britney's.
Even so, the news that Bynes' seven-year conservatorship was extended to 2023 this week was greeted with tremendous sadness by the 35-year-old's most loyal fans.
According to legal documents obtained by The Blast, a judge ruled this week that Bynes should remain under parents' control for at lesst the next two years.
The exact terms of the conservatorship, as well as the details of the judge's decision are under seal.
But the ruling is believed to be related to Amanda's recent stay in a psychiatric hospital.
The news is made especially disappointing by the fact that Amanda's health appeared to be on the upswing as recently as 2019.
It was then that Bynes gave an interview to Paper magazine in which she revealed that she was sober and undergoing treatment for her mental health issues.
Unfortunately, her recovery period was short-lived.
Bynes soon relapsed and went back into rehab.
It was there that she met and got engaged to a man named Paul Michael.
Shortly thereafter, Bynes announced that she was pregnant.
The events that transpired in the months that followed remain uncertain, but Bynes is no longer pregnant and no longer engaged.
She's been keeping a lower profile as of late, and fans were hopeful that that might be a sign that Bynes was working on herself.
While that may have been the case, it seems her judge still feels that she's not fit to properly care for herself.
Again, these circumstances are very different from Britney's, and conservatorships are not necessarily a bad thing.
But with Amanda demonstrating such progress, we can't help but think the judge's ruling came as a bitter disappointment.
It's also possible, however, that Bynes and her parents are all happy with -- or at least accepting of -- the current arrangement.
Whatever the case, we hope that Amanda will be able to receive whatever kind of help she needs during this difficult time.