"Sweet dreams my friend," Simmons, 62, wrote on Twitter and Instagram, where she also shared a photo of Chapman, 51.
The post came hours after news broke that Chapman was put into a medically induced coma at a Hawaii hospital after a choking emergency. However, since Simmons' message made it appear as if she was already mourning Chapman, her followers criticized for the awkward wording of her tribute.
"She is not gone yet. This is going to be taken out of content," one person tweeted.
"This is a very confusing post. I don't see anything about her passing away on any other social media so can you please clarify your post for all us fans? This post made my heart drop," another person wrote on Instagram.
"Such crap for her to post this and not clarify! Why even put it on before family has said anything," another wrote.
A few others defended Simmons post.
"I'm thinking that she's in a medically induced coma [like her] family announced. IMO I think Shannon was just simply telling her friend to have sweet dreams as a way of letting everyone know that she is thinking of her," one wrote.
"Listen, this is [one] of her best friends and how dare any of you take offense to her posting this!!!!" one riled up fan wrote. "Her heart is breaking just like everyone else's! I'm sure if she's not there she HAS BEEN IN TOUCH WITH DOG! And, furthermore, [don't] you think he and the family need time??? This guy is going to go through the worst Hell he's faced!!!"
Simmons and Chapman are longtime friends, with Chapman writing a heartwarming birthday tribute to Simmons recently.
"Happy Birthday to an amazing human and friend a friend who’s love knows no [boundaries]," Chapman wrote in March. "Being there when you need her, just a short text away when your down , a [little] bit of love from her goes a long way... she’s honest and fiercely loyal... life is a gift to be shared with people who love you... [I'm] blessed to have her in my life ! Happy Birthday Doll."
Before the 2017 A&E special about Chapman's fight with cancer aired, Chapman shared a photo with Simmons, writing that she "could not have made it through this ordeal without her."
"She went to every Drs appointment I may not have had surgery without her," Chapman wrote in November 2017. "She stayed by my side every minute of everyday I will always be grateful for her friendship and constant love and support."
Chapman fought throat cancer in 2017 and was told she was cancer free. Unfortunately, the cancer returned last year and doctors gave her a terminal diagnosis. She was hospitalized briefly in April after having trouble breathing.
On Sunday morning, the Chapman family confirmed Chapman was back in the hospital, this time in a medically induced coma.0comments
"Please say your prayers for Beth right now," Chapman's husband, Duane "Dog" Chapman, tweeted Sunday. "Thank you love you."
Photo credit: Instagram/Beth Chapman