Ella Singleton, a nine-year-old autistic girl from Norris Green, Liverpool, was left heartbroken after she received a hateful Christmas card from a classmate. In a Facebook post, her mother, Jenna, said that the "I hate you" message in the card triggered an angry outburst, with her daughter saying she wanted to die.
The post received tremendous support from readers who expressed their love for the heartbroken nine-year-old. Meanwhile, the parents of the girl who wrote the Christmas card also apologised for their daughter's action.
"Today the last day of term she came out of school not herself, very agitated and upset," Jenna wrote in the Facebook post dated 21 December. "It turned out that today in school Ella received another Christmas card only to read the words, To Ella, I hate you. This has devastated Ella. She keeps saying everyone hates her and how she should go away.
"As any parent of someone with Autism knows, anything that upsets them can cause a full-blown meltdown. Ella began angry lashing out at family members, saying she wants to die and tried to run away from home in the cold and wet in bare feet with no coat," the upset mother added.
She also posted pictures one of which features a tearful Ella who goes to Ranworth Square Primary School in Norris Green. The other was the rude card, reading "To ella, I hat you! Yappy Christmas!". Although the signature in the card was scratched, the girl who sent the card was identified.
"This is breaking heart! I have made this post public in the hope my friends and family share it," Jenna added.
Narrating the painful struggle that her daughter with ASD undergoes, Jenna further wrote that Ella has no friends, which is among the most difficult challenges for her. She even quoted a community paediatrician who said Ella "walks the yard alone at play time" in school.
The post melted hearts of many social media users, who felt sorry for the little girl and sent their love through their comments. "Merry Christmas Ella, lots of love from Scotland. You have people from all over the world sending you love & Christmas wishes," one Facebook user wrote.
"Ella you are a beautiful sweetheart! My daughter deals with bullies just like you and she has autism as well. I tell her words of encouragement every day. God made you special ❤️ Don't let them steal your spirit," wrote another user.
Meanwhile, the parents of the girl, who wrote the hateful Christmas card, said they were "mortified" to learn about the incident. They also assured they will make their daughter apologise for her action.
"Both me and her dad were mortified and disgusted in her - she has not been raised to be like that - none of our children have. And it is completely unacceptable. She has been told off and we have spoken to Jenna, Ella's mum, and my daughter will be going to see her personally to say sorry as well," the girl's mother told Liverpool Echo.
"I don't think she realised how those three words could make someone feel. And she knows what she has done is wrong and she has been told off," she added.