YouTube Star Admits to Placing Autistic Adopted Son With Another Family
Critics are accusing Myka Stauffer and her husband of exploiting the child for her social media brand
Myka Stauffer, a popular YouTuber who documented her family’s process of adopting and raising an autistic child from China for her hundreds of thousands of followers, has announced that the child has been placed with another family. First revealed in a YouTube video earlier this week, the news has sparked controversy among followers and critics who have accused Stauffer of exploiting the child to build a monetized online brand, fueling an ongoing debate about the ethics of sharing children’s lives on social media.
Stauffer and her husband James, who adopted son Huxley in 2017, said in the video that they had made the decision to place Huxley with another family under the advisory of various medical professionals.
“After multiple assessments, after multiple evaluations, numerous medical professionals have felt that he needed a different fit in his medical needs, he needed more,” Stauffer said in the video, while her husband said that Huxley had numerous special needs of which the parents were not aware before bringing the child to the United States.
Huxley was a major part of the family’s social media narrative, dating back to 2016 when Stauffer first began chronicling the adoption process. After adopting Huxley in 2017, Stauffer continued to share details about her life raising an autistic child on her social channels and in interviews and essays. Huxley continued to feature in Myka’s posts until early spring this year, when followers began to notice he’d gone missing. The owner of a Stauffer fan account told BuzzFeed News that when she asked Stauffer about Huxley on Instagram, Stauffer blocked her “immediately.”
After revealing Huxley had been placed with another family in a video on Tuesday, the Stauffers have received backlash from critics who have slammed Stauffer for exploiting the child for monetized content. Multiple companies that formerly sponsored Stauffer’s posts have announced they will no longer partner with the family, People reported.
In the video, Stauffer said Huxley is “thriving” and “very happy” with his new family. In a statement, the couple’s attorneys said the Stauffers “were forced to make a difficult decision, but it is in fact, the right and loving thing to do for this child.”
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