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‘I’m not the ugly one, they are’ - 10-year-old victim of cruel Instagram poll hits back at bullies

PUBLISHED: 09:03 20 July 2018 | UPDATED: 15:31 20 July 2018

Mia-Lili Bennett, 10, was the victim of cyber bullies who launched an 'ugly or not poll' and was left devastated. Picture: Mercury Press

Mia-Lili Bennett, 10, was the victim of cyber bullies who launched an 'ugly or not poll' and was left devastated. Picture: Mercury Press

Mercury Press & Media

A Norwich schoolgirl who was the victim of a cruel ‘ugly-or-not’ Instagram poll has hit back at the bullies who taunted her on national television.

Mum Corrinia, right, was forced to show the post to her daughter, left, to check if she was aware of it. Picture: Mercury PressMum Corrinia, right, was forced to show the post to her daughter, left, to check if she was aware of it. Picture: Mercury Press

Mia-Lili Bennett, 10, was put on suicide watch by her mother Corrinia after the post, which featured a photo of her face and the question “who thinks she ugly”.

But now the youngster is standing proud and told bullies to “just stop”.

MORE: Schoolgirl left on ‘suicide watch’ after Instagram ‘ugly or not’ poll

Speaking on Good Morning Britain, Mia-Lili said: “I’m not the ugly one they are because they’ve just hurt me, it’s hurting people’s feelings and just horrible so just stop.”

Lexi-May Bennett, now 9 years old, dad John Bennett, now 42, and Mia-Lili Bennetty, now 10 years old. Picture: Mercury PressLexi-May Bennett, now 9 years old, dad John Bennett, now 42, and Mia-Lili Bennetty, now 10 years old. Picture: Mercury Press

Mia-Lili originally set up an Instagram account without her mother’s knowledge, but soon confessed and within two hours it was taken down.

But in that short time it is thought someone took the photo of Mia-Lili from the profile to make the poll.

Mrs Bennett, a mother-of-three, told Instagram immediately who deleted the post.

But shocked by what she had seen, Mrs Bennett then decided to show Mia-Lili the post to find out if she knew about it, but also to ensure no one else would show her.

Mrs Bennett, 33, said: “I was devastated, angry, and I blamed myself. As a mum you think because she’s been through previous bullying, you think to yourself is it something that she’s not wearing, is it something that I should have made her look a bit better, is it something that I’ve stopped her doing?”

Mia-Lili added: “I was feeling really worried and sad and crying my eyes out, it just wasn’t very nice.”

Now the schoolgirl is said to be doing much better, and Mrs Bennett, of Wherry Road, said support for the family had been pouring in.

She said: “She’s doing so amazingly compared to what she was at the beginning. I’ve had from 700 to 1000 messages a day. I’ve had a lot of people reach out and say it’s happened to them and they’ve not had the confidence to come out and speak about it.”

Norfolk police said the incident was recorded as a crime of harassment and an investigation launched.

They added: “A person believed to be responsible for the poll has since been identified. That person will be spoken to at the appropriate time and in consultation with the victim we will then determine what action will be taken.”

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