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YouTuber 'rehomes' adopted autistic son who was featured in her viral videos
Popular YouTuber Myka Stauffer and her husband, James Stauffer, announced that they chose to place their child, Huxley, whom they adopted more than two years ago from China, into a new home over behavioral issues.
Myka Stauffer's channel has 714,000 subscribers, and the couple's family channel, the Stauffer Life, has 329,000 subscribers.
In July 2016, the couple announced that they were adopting a boy from China. Stauffer made dozens of videos about the adoption process, and she organized a fundraiser for Huxley's needs that subscribers donated to and shared, BuzzFeed News reported. Videos about the adoption process were also sponsored, and she said the profits were "going towards bringing our SON home from China!"
Stauffer shared in an article for Parade that the adoption agency who she worked with to adopt the child told the couple that Huxley had a "brain tumor" and "brain damage."
Huxley was 2½ years old at the time of his adoption in October 2017, according to BuzzFeed News. Stauffer continued to make videos about the child after his adoption. She later shared that his special needs file was not accurate, and Huxley had "a stroke in utero, has Level 3 autism, and sensory processing disorder."
But in late 2019 into 2020, Huxley began to no longer appear in Stauffer's posts on social media and YouTube videos, according to BuzzFeed News. Stauffer shared on Instagram on Feb. 16: "The last couple days have been hard I don't want to sugar coat anything. We have had a lot of melt downs, and a lot of behaviors that have had us on our knees begging god for guidance."
On Tuesday, the Stauffers shared a video titled "an update on our family." They revealed through tears that Huxley was no longer living in their home, and he was placed with another family. James Stauffer said the boy had special needs that they did not know about, and they sought opinions from multiple doctors and specialists.
"After multiple assessments, after multiple evaluations, numerous medical professionals have felt that he needed a different fit in his medical needs, he needed more," Myka Stauffer said. She added that "multiple scary things happened inside the home towards our other children."
"Do I feel like a failure as a mom? Like, 500 percent," Myka Stauffer said
The couple said Huxley is now with a family that is "the perfect match" for him. Myka Stauffer said "He is thriving, he is very happy, he is doing really well, and his new mommy has medical professional training, and it is a very good fit."
The mom has a daughter from a previous relationship, and the couple has had one daughter together and two sons.
The announcement prompted mixed reactions across social media. In the Tuesday video, the couple thanked viewers for supportive messages and respecting Huxley's privacy.
However, some critics noted that Stauffer shared personal details of Huxley's life in monetized videos. A petition on Change.org has more than 15,000 signatures as of Thursday night demanding that "The Stauffers remove all monetized content ft. Huxley from their YouTube channel."
"These people need to stop exploiting and profiting off of Huxley immediately! Their YouTube channel skyrocketed thanks to Huxley," the petition says. "He's done enough for the Stauffers. He bought them a McMansion, multiple vacations a year, etc. What did he get in exchange? He got re-homed as if her were a freaking puppy!"