Story highlights

Actress Ariel Winter fires back at Internet trolls

"You are not asking for anything because of what you are wearing," she wrote

The "Modern Family" star is 17

CNN  — 

“Modern Family” actress Ariel Winter isn’t going to be bullied by Internet trolls.

After posting an Instagram photo of herself in a bikini with her nieces over the weekend, Winter received a barrage of lewd and disparaging comments.

“Who knew that an innocent photo with my nieces would turn into this?” Winter, 17, asked in a second Instagram post responding to the unpleasant feedback.

Her response included a photo of the back of a woman’s legs marked with labels about the meaning some people are inclined to read into the length of a woman’s hem.

“The height of a girl’s skirt or whatever she is wearing for that matter, does not imply what she is asking for. It sickens me to think at 17 years old, a photo of myself with my nieces is suggesting that I’m ‘asking for it,’ ” Winter wrote.

The actress said she rarely gives weight to “mean things people bravely say behind their computer screens,” but in this case she’s speaking up for girls who are bullied.

“You are not asking for anything because of what you are wearing - you are expressing yourself and don’t you ever think you deserve the negativity as the consequence to what you are wearing - YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL,” Winter wrote.

Instagram commenters weighed in with their support.

“Beautiful young girl dressed appropriately for the activity… where’s the controversy?” one asked.