Britney Spears' memoir, "The Woman in Me," was released in October 2023, shedding light on her relationship with ex Justin Timberlake and putting it under scrutiny.

Throughout the early 2000s, Spears and Timberlake captivated mainstream attention. Spears, aged 17, began dating Timberlake, who was 18 at the time. As revealed in the singer's memoir, their relationship ended in 2002 after experiencing profound love and a terminated pregnancy. attempted to contact representatives for Timberlake, Spears, and the book's publisher for comment but did not receive a response.

In her memoir, Spears recounted her decision to have an abortion at the time as "one of the most agonizing things" she had ever experienced. However, amidst the love and limelight, their relationship wasn't always tragic. From their meet-cute as kids on the Mickey Mouse Club to their coordinated outfits, there was a period in their lives when the couple seemed to be very much in sync.

Spears and Timberlake have seemingly moved on in the years since their relationship. Timberlake is currently married to actor Jessica Biel, with whom he shares two children. Spears, who has two children with ex Kevin Federline, was previously married to Sam Asghari before their separation in 2023. Both stars have continued to thrive in their entertainment careers. Nonetheless, it's difficult not to reminisce about their early years together.

Continue reading for a retrospective on their relationship.

1992 — Spears and Timberlake meet as kids on 'Mickey Mouse Club'

Before earning the title of pop princess in the 1990s and early 2000s, Britney Spears began her career as a Mouseketeer. In 1992, she secured a spot as a cast member on Disney's reboot of "The Mickey Mouse Club," known as "The All-New Mickey Mouse Club." There, she appeared alongside future stars Christina Aguilera, Ryan Gosling, Keri Russell, and her eventual romantic partner Justin Timberlake.

In an excerpt from her memoir obtained by People, Spears reminisced about her time on the series and recalled her first kiss with Justin while they were both starring in the show.

"Being on the show was like boot camp for the entertainment industry: rigorous dance rehearsals, singing lessons, acting classes, time in the recording studio, all while trying to keep up with schoolwork in between," Spears wrote. "The Mouseketeers naturally formed their own cliques, divided by the dressing rooms we shared: Christina Aguilera and I were the younger kids, and we shared a dressing room. We looked up to the older kids – Keri Russell, Ryan Gosling, and Tony Lucca, who I found very handsome. And I quickly formed a connection with a boy named Justin Timberlake."

"At a sleepover once, we played Truth or Dare, and someone dared Justin to kiss me," she continued. "With a Janet Jackson song playing in the background, he leaned in and kissed me."

1999 — Spears and Timberlake step into the spotlight, hand-in-hand

Spears and Timberlake began dating in 1999. That same year, Spears embarked on her ...Baby One More Time Tour, performing across the country. The following year, in 2000, she went on her (You Drive Me) Crazy Tour.

In 2000, Timberlake and 'N Sync released their hit album "No Strings Attached."

Jan. 8, 2001 — Spears and Timberlake don all denim in a now-iconic style moment

The couple made a bold fashion statement in 2001 when they attended the American Music Awards wearing matching denim outfits. Spears wore a strapless floor-length denim gown, while Timberlake sported an all-denim suit, complete with a denim cowboy hat.

In 2020, Timberlake appeared on 'N Sync bandmate Lance Bass' podcast, "The Daily Popcast," and reminisced about the all-denim red carpet moment, commenting, "You do a lot of things when you're young and in love."

Jan. 28, 2001 — Spears and Timberlake do Super Bowl halftime

The 2001 Super Bowl halftime show was a star-studded affair, featuring Spears performing alongside Timberlake and his 'N Sync bandmates, as well as Aerosmith, Nelly, and Mary J. Blige.

In 2022, Spears commemorated the moment with a post on her Instagram. The post included a clip of her performance singing "Walk This Way," with Justin visible towards the end of the clip.

July 29, 2001 — At a match, ‘Pinky’ and ‘Stinky’ match

When 'N Sync hosted its third annual Challenge for the Children charity event in July 2001, Spears stood by Timberlake's side. The event featured an all-stars celebrity basketball match. Spears and Timberlake continued their coordinated affection by wearing matching jerseys with their pet names for each other ("Stinky" and "Pinky") on the back.

According to a 2014 Billboard story reflecting on Spears' 2002 interview with Oprah, the singer explained the origins of the nicknames.

"I have a ring that he gave me that I wear on my pinky, so he started calling me Pinky, and then I started calling him Stinky for some reason, so that's our nicknames!" she explained.

September 2001 — Spears and Timberlake at home and in love

In September 2001, at the age of 19, Spears revealed in an interview with The Guardian that Timberlake lived with her when he was in town.

"I'm not ashamed at all to say that I love him from the bottom of my heart," she expressed to the outlet. "As far as love is concerned, with him, too much is not enough. He's everything."

Feb. 2, 2002 — Live from New York, Spears and Timberlake appear on 'SNL'

While promoting her film "Crossroads," Spears made her second appearance on "Saturday Night Live" as both the show's musical guest and host. During her opening monologue, Timberlake made a cameo appearance alongside her.

Feb. 11, 2002 — Spears brings Timberlake to Los Angeles ‘Crossroads’ premiere

In February 2002, Spears starred in the cult-classic girls' road trip film "Crossroads." To promote the movie, Timberlake accompanied her as her date to the world premiere in Hollywood, California.

March 2002 — Spears confirms she and Timberlake called it quits

Amid intense speculation about their relationship, Spears reportedly mentioned during a London press conference promoting "Crossroads" that she was not in "an intense relationship with anyone at the moment," as reported by Entertainment Weekly.

A few days later, on March 27, 2002, Spears unequivocally stated on Britain's "Big Breakfast" show that she was single.

"I'm single... right now," she stated in an interview with Richard Bacon.

Nov. 4, 2002 — Timberlake breaks his silence on the breakup

Following their breakup, fans and media speculated about the reasons behind it.

That year, Timberlake did an interview with Barbara Walters where he hinted that Spears had been a factor in the split.

During a "20/20" special that aired on November 4, 2002, the pop singer discussed his stardom, 'N Sync, and breakup with Spears with Walters at his family home in Memphis, Tennessee.

When questioned by Walters about rumors suggesting that Spears had cheated, Timberlake didn't outright deny the claims, despite having previously informed the journalist that he and Spears had agreed not to openly disclose specific reasons for their breakup.

"We're not perfect. I don't judge anybody. It's just young love. It's just young love. It was a very intense relationship, that's for sure," Timberlake responded to Walters' questions about Spears' alleged infidelity.

Timberlake further fueled speculation later that year when he released "Cry Me a River," accompanied by a music video featuring a female actor bearing a resemblance to Spears.

November 2003 — Britney speaks to Diane Sawyer about their breakup

During an emotional interview on "Primetime" with Spears, interviewer Diane Sawyer delved into the details of their breakup, portraying her as "a sort of antagonist in the media spotlight."

"At the time, Sawyer asked Spears, 'You broke his heart. You did something that caused him so much pain, so much suffering. What did you do?'

In response, Spears expressed, 'I was upset. I was upset for a while... I think we were both really young, and it was kind of waiting to happen. I will always love him, and he’ll always have a special place in my heart.'"

"Sawyer continued, 'He left the impression that you weren’t faithful, that you betrayed the relationship.'

Spears replied, 'I think everyone has a side of their story to make them feel a certain way. I’m not technically saying he’s wrong, but I’m not technically saying he’s right either. It was a really weird time... I just felt exploited and weird.'"

In a now-deleted Instagram post from December 2021, Spears revealed that following the split, she refrained from speaking to anyone initially, as reported by E! News.

"I never shared this before, but after that major breakup years ago, I couldn't bring myself to speak afterward," she wrote. "For a long time, I remained silent... I was in shock."

June 2021 — Timberlake tweets his support amid the #FreeBritney movement

In 2021, as Spears sought to terminate her 13-year conservatorship, Timberlake urged fans on X, formerly known as Twitter, saying, "We should all be supporting Britney at this time."

"Regardless of our past, both the good and the bad, and regardless of how long ago it occurred... what she's going through is simply unjust," Timberlake expressed in his tweet. "No woman should ever face restrictions on decisions about her own body. No individual should EVER be detained against their will... or have to seek permission to access everything they've worked so hard for."

October 2023 — Spears reveals in her memoir that she and Timberlake terminated a pregnancy

In her forthcoming book, "The Woman in Me," Spears disclosed that she and Timberlake experienced a pregnancy during their relationship and ultimately decided to terminate it.

"It came as a surprise, but to me, it wasn't a tragedy. I loved Justin deeply. I always envisioned us starting a family together someday. This was just happening much sooner than I had expected," Spears wrote in a preview of her memoir obtained by People. "However, Justin wasn't thrilled about the pregnancy. He believed we weren't prepared to have a child at that point in our lives, that we were still too young."

"If the decision had been solely mine, I would never have gone through with it," she added. "But Justin was adamant about not wanting to become a father."

January 2024 - Spears’ fans rally to chart her 2011 track ‘Selfish’ after Timberlake releases a new single called ‘Selfish’

On January 25, Timberlake announced the release of his sixth studio album along with its new single, "Selfish."

In response to Spears' revelations about their relationship in her memoir, her fans mobilized to boost her 2011 song titled "Selfish" on iTunes charts. By January 26, Spears' "Selfish" reached the No. 2 spot, while Timberlake's track of the same name secured the No. 3 position. (Representatives for Apple, Spears, and Timberlake did not provide comments in response to NBC News' inquiry.)

January 2024 - Spears apologizes for ‘some of the things I wrote about in my book’ and praises Timberlake’s new music

On January 29, Spears took to her Instagram to express remorse for certain aspects mentioned in her book, stating, "I wanna apologize for some of the things I wrote about in my book. If I offended any of the people I genuinely care about I am deeply sorry." Additionally, she shared her admiration for Justin Timberlake's new song "Selfish," declaring, "I also wanted to say I am in love with Justin Timberlake’s new song ‘Selfish.’"

She further commended Timberlake's appearance on "The Tonight Show" with Jimmy Fallon and lauded his other new track, "Sanctified," describing it as "wow."