She battled to get two stars for the campmates during the Monstrous Monoliths
And many supportive fans of the show tweeted that Anne Hegerty’s tears and anxiety made for uncomfortable viewing because she has Asperger’s – a type of autism.
The 60-year-old was widely praised for her bravery on the show as she went outside of her comfort zone – and for raising awareness about autism.
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I’m A Celeb: Supportive fans deemed autistic Anne Hegerty’s tears ‘uncomfortable’ to watch on Tuesday night as her family fear jungle life will be too much for her
Harsh conditions: Even Anne’s family have expressed fears that jungle life will become too much for her and she has already battled to cope with the conditions in camp
But even her family have expressed fears that jungle life will become too much for her and she has already battled to cope with the conditions in camp.
The Chase star has endured a rollercoaster ride in the jungle, breaking down in tears when she entered the bare bones camp Snake Rock on her first night.
She also was visibly upset when she the public voted for her to do the trial and she appeared very unsure when she took part in it.
Battle: The Chase star revealed she’s been having a tough time she had been having due to the physical discomfort of living in the basic camp
The viewers wrote: ‘It’s breaking my heart seeing mumma @anne_hegerty so scared and uncomfortable.’
‘Anne Hegerty is a lovable character and seeing her struggle so badly makes for very uncomfortable viewing. All the more so because previously we’ve only ever known her as superior and in full control on the chase. #ImACeleb.’
‘Normally we laugh when someone struggles with a trial – but it was so incredibly uncomfortable watching @anne_hegerty struggle with that. @imacelebrity #comeonanne #imaceleb2018
Impassioned: Lots of people took to Twitter to write about their perception of the show
‘Really felt for @anne_hegerty on last nights trial that woulda been bloody tough damn all u guys who voted her that woulda been way too much #autism #imaceleb2018 #welldonefortrying.’
Moreover, Anne’s family have expressed their fears that life in the jungle will become too much for her.
Her uncle Richard told Mail Online exclusively he was surprised that given her condition Anne agreed to sign up for the hugely popular reality show – but wished her every success.
Generous: DIY: SOS presenter Nick Knowles. 56, sacrificed his luxury item, a pillow, so that Anne could have a decent night’s sleep but some felt he didn’t really want to
‘I know she will find it difficult, but we are all rooting for her,’ said 87 year old Richard from his home in Dorset.
‘It is very much out of her comfort zone and to be honest I am surprised that she agreed to go on the show.
‘We do wish her well, but given what I have heard it could all be a bit too much for her. It will be very hard and I think we have seen that already. I really do hope she will be okay.’
Fellow Chase star Shaun Wallace told Lorraine that her appearance on the show ‘tugs on his heartstrings.’
He said: ‘Anne’s normally good under the timed pressure, but she’s out of her comfort zone in this moment in time, but she’s doing really well and I’m really proud of her.
‘You’re seeing the human side of Anne which is fantastic actually, but what makes me really proud is that she’s announced she suffers from autism.
‘She’s trying her very very best but I hope her efforts will take her all the way, she’s getting used to the environment she’s in, the more she survives it the greater her chances of winning.
‘You might not see it now but Anne’s resilient, she’s a tough cookie, although that trial was a bit difficult for her, the more she does the more resilient you’ll see her.’
Anne has already won the hearts of millions of fans of the show and has been praised for being so honest about her condition by the National Autistic Society.
Her brother Jon, 55, used his Twitter account to re-post messages of support for his older sister.
One Tweet was from Jenny Ryan, a colleague on the daytime quiz show The Chase.
Ryan tweeted: ‘I hope everybody watching appreciates just how far @anne_Hegerty is going outside her comfort zone. I’m proud of her for being so incredibly brave and challenging herself.’
Anne said she didn’t raise the subject of autism, but was happy to talk about it leading to the National Autistic Society to tweet: ‘Lovely to see everyone supporting each other. We are backing @anne–hegerty all the way on her #imaceleb journey.’
Prior to entering the Australian rain forest she had admitted producers were ‘anxious’ about how she would cope with the challengers.
Hug: Breaking down in tears, Anne said: ‘I’ve been struggling, I didn’t think it would be this way’
Anne was diagnosed with Asperger’s syndrome in 2003 when she was 45 years old.
Asperger’s, is a developmental disorder characterized by significant difficulties in social interaction and nonverbal communication, along with restricted and repetitive patterns of behavior and interests.
Anne was lauded by an 11-year-old autistic boy in a touching open letter.
Sweet: Georgia Toffollo shared an image of the letter sent by Joseph Hughes from Preston, who gushed over the TV star and admitted she was an inspiration to him thanks to her ‘cool’ job and bravery to enter the jungle
Clearly having touched audiences, Georgia Toffollo shared an image of the letter sent by Joseph Hughes from Preston, who gushed over the TV star and admitted she was an inspiration to him thanks to her ‘cool’ job and bravery to enter the jungle.
Clearly touched by the star, the young boy penned the letter in which he gushed over the star and her entry into the jungle.
He wrote: ‘To Anne, My name is Joseph Hughes and I am 11. I live in Preston Lancashire and I go to a specialist school. I was diagnosed with autism when I was 5. I like to watch you on The Chase…
‘And now, I have been watching you in the jungle. I couldn’t go in there because there are too many bugs. You are very clever…
Sweet: Kate Jarvis filmed her son this morning, telling him his letter had gone viral and the team behind Thunderbirds had been in touch, offering to send Joseph a gift
‘Sometimes people are mean to me because I am autistic but watching you makes me see that other people have autism too and maybe I can have a cool job like you when I am older. So you like Thunderbirds? I love them…
‘My favourite is Thunderbird 2. I have drawn you a picture, I hope you like it. Good luck in the jungle, I hope you like it. Love from Joseph.’
While sharing the post, Toff revealed she ‘loved it so much’ while the image was attached to a message stating it ‘gave the reader goosebumps’.
Meanwhile, the dramatic end to the episode also saw DIY: SOS presenter Nick Knowles. 56, sacrifice his luxury item, a pillow, so that Anne could have a decent night’s sleep.
Starring role: Anne, who is know as The Governess, was diagnosed with the form of Autism when she watched a TV programme and realised she had all of the symptoms
However, Andi Peters labelled the gesture disingenuous on spin-off show Extra Camp while fans on social media claimed the star was being ‘fake.’
The episode saw the exiled campmates of Snake Rock – Anne, James McVey, Fleur East and Rita Simons – finally reunite with those in Croc Creek.
John Barrowman couldn’t contain his excitement at seeing the group, giving them a big hug.
Talking in the Bush Telegraph Fleur said: ‘John just ran up to us, he was so excited. while James whimsically added: James ‘Walking into Croc Creek was like walking into a 5 star hotel.’
Welcome:The episode saw the exiled campmates of Snake Rock – Anne, James McVey, Fleur East and Rita Simons – finally reunite with those in Croc Creek
Reunited: John Barrowman couldn’t contain his excitement at seeing the group, giving them a big hug
Rita added: ‘It’s like Christmas right now and on top of that we have all of these gorgeous people.’
Anne sat on a log talking to Nick about Snake Rock and candidly discussed the tough time she had been having due to the physical discomfort of living in the basic camp.
Breaking down in tears, she said: ‘I’ve been struggling, I didn’t think it would be this way.’
What is autism?
• Autism is a lifelong disability which affects how people communicate and interact with the world.
• There are approximately 700,000 autistic adults and children in the UK.
• Every person on the autism spectrum is different. It can present some serious challenges –but, with the right support and understanding, autistic people and their families can live full lives.
• Although everyone is different, people on the autism spectrum may:
o Be under or oversensitive to sounds, touch, tastes, smells, light or colours, which can make everyday life extremely difficult
o Find social situations and change a challenge, sometimes leading to extreme levels of anxiety
o Experience a ‘meltdown’ if overwhelmed by anxiety or sensory overload
o Benefit from extra time to process and respond to communication.
Rita then told the Croc Creek campmates about the challenge they’d just done and that it was for luxury items.
Presented with a pillow, a generous Nick gave his luxury item to Anne, melting hearts as he said ‘she needed it more.’
However this gesture was slammed by Andi as he told Extra Camp hosts Joe Swash and Scarlett Moffatt: ‘He requested the pillow – he didn’t know who else was going into the jungle with him so he requested it for himself.
‘So by giving the pillow to somebody in their hour of need, on national telly in front of 10million viewers? That’s what a cynical person might say.’
He added: ‘People watching at home see straight through things like that, but it was a lovely gesture!’
His comments incurred a large amount of booing from the audience, with Scarlett and Joe saying it was ‘what a cynical person might think,’ rather than himself.
Fans on social media were also quick to lambast the star for his ‘fake gesture’ although some said he had melted their hearts with his kindness.
The episode also saw hosts Holly Willoughby and Declan Donnelly enter the camp and reveal John Barrowman would face the next terrifying Bushtucker trial, Scary Rose.
I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! continues on Wednesday November 21, ITV1 at 9:00pm.
Comment: After Andi Peter’s said Nick’s gesture may have been disingenuous, social media followers branded the star ‘fake’
Support: Some fans praised the star for his giving nature