Kevin Federline Gives Britney Spears an Ultimatum
WEDNESDAY FEBRUARY 28, 2007 09:20 AM EST
Britney Spears caused a case of mass whiplash when she bolted from rehab after less than 24 hours – then checked back in days later. The reason for the quick turnaround? An ultimatum from Kevin Federline, a source tells PEOPLE.
Upset by the news that Spears had checked out of Promises in Malibu on Wednesday, Federline scheduled an emergency hearing to seek physical and legal custody of their sons Sean Preston, 18 months, and Jayden James, 6 months, says a source.
Ultimately, Federline, 28, gave his estranged wife a choice: Either she got back into Promises that night or Federline would go to court in the morning, says the source.
(Spears, 25, had since January had custody of the boys, with visitation for Federline, thanks to a temporary court order issued after she filed for divorce in November.)
At about 7 p.m. that night, Spears, driven by a friend, showed up outside Federline's home in Tarzana, Calif. – followed by some 20 paparazzi. Federline failed to appear, so she left.
When a photographer followed her to a gas station, she became enraged and began whacking his SUV with an umbrella. Later that night Spears's mother, Lynne, 51, who had flown in from her home in Kentwood, La., to be near her daughter and grandsons, took Spears back to Promises. Says a friend of Federline's: "Britney scared everyone real bad."
On Friday Federline – who, sources say, also played a role in persuading Spears to enter rehab in the first place – spent an hour visiting his ex at Promises; the next evening he also brought the boys, and they were joined by Lynne.
"Kevin is working closely with Lynne to let Britney know how serious it is that she gets help," says one family friend. A source close to Federline notes that "Kevin loves Britney ... nothing has changed about that."
Right now the boys are "being taken care of by Kevin," says a source. "Lynne is helping." Eventually, says a Spears family friend, Federline, who will turn 29 this month, "would like [Britney] to have the kids because he thinks she is a good mother."
But to make that happen will require hard work. A typical stay at Promises lasts 45 days – and Spears "is getting no special treatment," says her manager Larry Rudolph. "She has a regular room, a regular routine. She is doing exceptionally well."
Kevin's Side of the Story
Wednesday February 28, 2007
Britney Spears’s current rehab stint has already had one positive outcome -- Kevin Federline's transformation into Super Dad.
A source close to the former back-up dancer says he's currently put his life on hold while he works overtime to care for his two sons (Sean Preston, 17 months, and 5-month-old Jayden James) and bring his family back together.
“He’s devastated and cries all the time,” a source close to Federline, 28, tells Us. “Kevin wants to get back together with her. He is her biggest supporter."
The former Mr. Spears may be Mr. Responsible now, but he wasn’t always the picture of perfect fatherdom. In the days before Sean Preston was born, Federline was seen partying and smoking marijuana in L.A. and Las Vegas.
But his experiences with Spears seems to have transformed him. And he might be helping the pop star get back on track, too.
It was at least partially at his urging that Spears entered rehab at the Crossroads Center on the island of Antigua. And when she checked out a day later, Federline and Spears’s mom, Lynne, took the drastic step of taking her children away from her. Federline reportedly told her she couldn’t see her sons again until she went to rehab.
It’s unclear how Brit will fare in all this, but one thing is clear: K-Fed is emerging as much more than a punchline for late night TV fodder.