RS / X17online.com 1 / 7
RS / X17online.com 1 / 7

According to legend (and by legend, we mean Rolling Stone), when Britney Spears is blond, she's happy. When she's brunette, she's sad. So when Dark Britney emerged over the holidays, it didn't take long for rumors of trouble to surface, too.

"'Crazy' Britney Heading Back to the Psych Ward," blares this week's National Enquirer, which claims the desperately-in-need-of-a-new-hairdo-of-any-color popster's string-pulling dad, Jamie, has warned her to "straighten up" or face being "committed" again.

RELATED: See more pics of Britney

The tab maintains that the "deeply troubled" and "seriously depressed" Brit, who was placed under a psychiatric hold in January 2008 after being hauled out of her house on a gurney, has tossed terrifying "tantrums and cries for help" in recent days, including "pulling out her hair in clumps, throwing screaming fits -- and worse."

The purported root of the problem: Spears is upset that her father's conservatorship powers have been extended, so much so that her rage supposedly "boiled over" and led to a "huge fight."

"Britney screamed at Jamie that he was making her crazy," contends a source, "and that she didn't know what she would do to herself if she had to continue to be a prisoner..."

The insider says that didn't go over well with Papa Spears, who allegedly fired back by throwing out the phrase "psych ward."

RELATED: Is Britney Spears following in the footsteps of Marilyn Monroe?

But the official word from Camp Brit-Brit is that the Enquirer is the one who needs to have its head examined.

In a single-word statement that says it all, Spears' Web site posted a scan of the tabloid tale with the word "BULLS#!T" stamped across it in angry red letters.

A Britney confidant echoes to Gossip Cop that the story of her so-called "new breakdown" is "untrue."

Besides, Spears, whose Circus tour was one of the biggest moneymakers of 2009, looked just fine on Wednesday afternoon when she was snapped chatting on her phone while hanging out on the balcony of a Los Angeles hotel with sons Sean Preston, 4, and Jayden James, 3.

RELATED: Check out Britney's spread in Elle

Not seen: her sometime boyfriend, Jason Trawick, whose reputation was defended earlier this week against accusations of a wandering eye.

Not as defensible was the decision by Brit's bodyguard to park her shiny new white BMW in a clearly marked no-parking zone between two handicapped spots during a gym outing this week.

Radar Online says Spears, who was riding shotgun, hopped out of the car with her minder and walked into the building, where they spent an hour before returning to the inconsiderately situated vehicle.

Read more Hot Gossip