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Tuesday 19th March 2019

Viewers in war of words over 40-stone woman in Shut-Ins: Britain's Fattest People

Claire has been bed-bound for six years...

A new series of Shut-Ins: Britain's Fattest People began on Channel 4 last night, and viewers were left fiercely divided about a mother-of-two who weighs 40 stone.

The documentary series, which follows the struggles of three severely morbidly obese people, introduced us to Claire who has been bed-bound for the last six years.

Claire doesn't know where her belly button is (Credit: C4)

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The fly-on-the-wall episode - which aired on Wednesday 9 January - entered Claire's home, where her two daughters Tracey and Jasmine are forced to do nearly everything for their mum who is 'trapped' in her own body.

Because Tracey has two young children and a home of her own, the burden of care falls mainly on 19-year-old Jasmine who is seen crying as she tells the camera: "You shouldn’t have to look after your mum, your mum looks after you."

She is seen washing her mum, who is incapable of doing this herself, and bringing her meals and anything else she needs.

Claire is too large to get out of bed (credit: C4)

Read more: James Bulger's mum Denise 'disgusted' by Channel 5 documentary

I watched Shutins..I felt as though the mother was a lazy cow..just expected her daughter's to do everything..

The programme tracks the family's journey as local surgeon Nick Carter battles to get Claire the life-changing surgery she so desperately needs.

Claire is one of Britain’s 50,000 people who are super-morbidly obese - and some viewers had deep sympathy for the mum.

One said: "So let me get this straight.. Under eating is a mental illness that people are more open minded to understand. however, when it comes to understanding that over eating is a mental illness as well it’s just greed? Got it!  #Shutins don’t @ me #britainsfattestpeople."

Another added: "I can’t believe how many horrible tweets there are about #shutins. It hurts me to think that people can be so quick to judge. I know Jasmine well, she is a kind, warm-hearted person who I am proud to call a friend. I admire her for standing by her mums side through all of this."

A third said: "If people could stop being hateful [bleep] about the women on tonight’s #shutins and realise there are some serious addiction problems as well mental and physical health issues going on, that would be lovely. Thanks."

Some expressed shock at the "unbelievable level of hate" directed at Claire and her daughters.

Other viewers were ferocious in their criticism of Claire, calling her a "lazy cow" for allowing her daughters to do everything for her.

One said: "I’m not feeling sympathy towards the individuals in #shutins #britainsfattestpeople  Someone please help me feel some sympathy."

Another blasted: "Hi Clare... here is a few of these from all us humans that make the effort in the life despite any obstacles and hardships  now get a [bleep] grip along with some self respect and stop ruining your daughters lives because your self centred #shutins #britainsfattestpeople."

A third typed: "There has to be an alarm point when putting your socks on becomes difficult. Then walking becomes difficult. I don't understand how they get to the bed bound stage. I once saw my reflection in a car window and thought 'I need to shift that derby' so I did. #ShutIns."

Claire's daughters are overweight themselves (Credit: C4)

"She’s not an overbearing mother," said another. "She's a mother who literally keeps her kids prisoners who have to look after her. There's a big difference #ShutIns."

Others labelled Claire "utterly selfish" and a "mother who has destroyed her daughters' lives".

During the episode, both daughters revealed that the emotional distress of having to look after their mother has been taking its toll on them and causing them to become overweight themselves.

Sharon and Andrew feature on next week's show (Credit: C4)

Next Wednesday (16 January), the second instalment meets overweight couple Sharon and Andrew.

Sharon Hill, who featured in the first series, has managed to get her weight down, but now her husband Andrew weighs 36 stone and is trapped in the house.

Do you have any sympathy for Claire? Leave us a comment on our Facebook page @EntertainmentDailyFix and let us know what you think.