Britney's rise to pop superstardom and her infamous 2008 breakdown and subsequent conservatorship was all documented in the recently-released New York Times film, "Framing Britney Spears".
And reflecting on the programme during an interview on SiriusXM's "Andy Cohen Live" on Monday (22Feb21), Mayer admitted he had become emotional while looking back at Britney's journey.
"I almost cried five times during that," he sighed. "To see the sadness in this human being, I almost, I mean the end, I mean, I was on the edge of tears five times, because if you understand what this business, slash industry, slash lifestyle does to a person. To go through this and come out the other side OK, is to have infinite grace for those who struggle with it."
John continued to admit he doesn't think he would have coped so well in the industry he chose had he been a woman.
"I came out OK... I have a very strong feeling that part of that is because I'm a man," he mused. "And I have a very strong feeling that a lot of these things that happen to female performers is endemic to being female. Why do so many men emerge going, 'Learned my lesson. Yes I got dinked in the head, but I'm back baby'? So I watched it with such grace for someone who got much more maligned by the inhuman experiment of fame than I did. And I go, 'Why did I get through that? Why did I find my way through that obstacle course? What was afforded to me stylistically?' "
"The stylistic difference of being an outlaw. If you're a man, you're an outlaw. If you're a woman, you're kind of crazy. And when I watched that through that lens, my heart just ached the whole time."