A YouTuber who has shared the story of her adopted son with her hundreds of thousands of followers is facing backlash after announcing that her family has permanently placed the boy in a new “forever home,” KTLA sister station WJW in Cleveland reported Tuesday.
Myka Stauffer and her husband James adopted Huxley, who has autism, from China in 2017, according to People.
She shared videos of the adoption process and posted several videos of Huxley when he was first brought into the family, featuring the little boy on her monetized channel. In total, Stauffer produced and posted 27 videos about the family’s “adoption journey,” BuzzFeed reported.
As of Thursday, the account had 715,000 subscribers.
In a video posted on Tuesday titled, “An update on our family,” the Ohio couple said Huxley had “more special needs that we weren’t aware of and that we were not told,” and that they were giving him up.
“There’s not an ounce of our body that doesn’t love Huxley with all of our being,” Stauffer said in the video. “There wasn’t a minute that I didn’t try our hardest…after multiple assessments, after multiple evaluations, numerous medical professionals have felt that he needed a different fit and that his medical needs, he needed more.”
She said Huxley is living with a “new mommy” in a “forever home.”
“Do I feel like a failure as a mom? Like, 500 percent,” Stauffer said. “The last couple months have been like the hardest thing I could have ever imagined to going to choosing to do because ultimately, after pouring our guts and our heart into this little boy.”
Stauffer and her husband have four other children.
“He is thriving, he is happy, he is doing really well, and his new mommy has medical professional training, and it is a very good fit,” Stauffer said.
The YouTube post was met with both support and criticism, with many users expressing heartbreak for the child.
Stauffer faced much more of a backlash on Twitter, where her posts were flooded with negative comments by Thursday morning. Some used the hashtag #cancelmykastauffer to express outrage.
They literally used the term ‘re-home’ and phrase ‘sending him to his forever home,’ one Twitter user wrote “As a special needs mom I am beyond frustrated. So if one of their other 4 kids are autistic or have other special needs will they abandon?”
“You’re one of the most disgusting individuals I’ve ever encountered. I hope @YouTube demonetizes every video where Huxley’s name is mentioned,” one user responding to Stauffer’s last posted Tweet. The comment garnered nearly 900 likes.
While sharing the adoption story, Stauffer’s channel grew in popularity and she received some high-profile sponsorships, according to BuzzFeed.
A Change.org petition organized Wednesday is seeking the removal of all monetized content involving the child on Stauffer’s YouTube page.
“These people need to stop exploiting and profiting off of Huxley immediately!” the petition read. “Their YouTube channel skyrocketed thanks to Huxley!”
By Thursday morning, it had garnered more than 8,000 digital signatures.