Britney Spears songwriter debunks fan theories about ‘Everytime’ meaning

Video britney spears everytime video

Britney Spears’s 2003 song “Everytime” is not about her unborn baby with Justin Timberlake, as some fans recently theorised, the songwriter has said.

The “Toxic” singer, 41, who dated the NSYNC frontman from 1999 to 2002, reveals that she had an abortion during their relationship in her forthcoming memoir, The Woman in Me, which will be published on 24 October.

Since the revelation was published last week, fans have begun to wonder if “Everytime”, which has long been assumed to be about her relationship with Timberlake, also alludes to the terminated pregnancy.

However, according to Annet Artani, who wrote the song with Spears, the ballad was about their respective breakups – mostly Artani’s. It is not a reference to an unborn baby, she told TMZ.

When the two started writing the track, Spears and Timberlake had been broken up for nine months, and Artani had just split from Spears’s Dream Within a Dream Tour musical director.

Artani recalled that she and the “…Baby One More Time” singer would commiserate together at the piano while writing the song. She said that Spears made no mention of a baby or abortion during the writing process.

In response to the song’s chorus, in which Spears croons: “And every time / I see you in my dreams / I see your face, you’re haunting me / I guess I need you, baby”, Artani said Spears settled on the word “haunting” simply because they needed a word that rhymed.

Some fans believed that Spears was singing about being haunted by her decision to abort the baby.

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Regarding the song’s accompanying music video, which came out in 2004, Artani said she was not involved in its creation. It therefore remains unknown why Spears chose to include visuals of a woman giving birth and a woman dying.

The Independent has contacted Spears’s representatives for comment.

Of the unplanned pregnancy, Spears wrote in her memoir: “It was a surprise, but for me, it wasn’t a tragedy. I loved Justin so much. I always expected us to have a family together one day. This would just be much earlier than I’d anticipated.

“But Justin definitely wasn’t happy about the pregnancy. He said we weren’t ready to have a baby in our lives, that we were way too young.”

While opening up about the “agonising” decision to get the abortion, she implied that she did so because that NSYNC frontman had wanted her to. “I’m sure people will hate me for this, but I agreed not to have the baby. I don’t know if that was the right decision,” she wrote in an excerpt shared ahead of the book’s publication.

“If it had been left up to me alone, I never would have done it. And yet Justin was so sure that he didn’t want to be a father.”

Both the audio and print versions of The Woman in Me will be released on 24 October.