In a recent video, YouTuber Myka Stauffer and her husband announced that they would be “re-homing” their adopted Chinese son, Huxley.
Four-year-old Huxley has autism, and the couple reportedly wanted to place him in a home that could better address his needs. They adopted him from China three years ago.
Stauffer started her YouTube channel in 2014, sharing parenting tips and vlogs with her five children. She has over 700,000 subscribers, and many monetized videos featured Huxley and his “adoption journey.”
Many online are accusing Stauffer and her husband of exploiting Huxley for financial gain and then abandoning him.
They adopted a toddler from China knowing he had autism and profited off him for years.Now that things have gotten harder and the excitement of being "white saviors" has worn off they decided to rehome/return him.As if he were an animal or a toy. #mykastauffer https://t.co/K6jzxQNBKt— Camila | Plaid + Sugar (@thecamiway) May 28, 2020
They adopted a toddler from China knowing he had autism and profited off him for years.
Now that things have gotten harder and the excitement of being "white saviors" has worn off they decided to rehome/return him.
As if he were an animal or a toy. #mykastauffer https://t.co/K6jzxQNBKt
— Camila | Plaid + Sugar (@thecamiway) May 28, 2020
Autistic children aren’t puppies. They don’t have “forever families.” They don’t get “rehomed.” They get abandoned.Myka Stauffer abandoned this autistic child. https://t.co/H7ZrsYvXI8— Sara Luterman (@slooterman) May 28, 2020
Autistic children aren’t puppies. They don’t have “forever families.” They don’t get “rehomed.” They get abandoned.
Myka Stauffer abandoned this autistic child. https://t.co/H7ZrsYvXI8
— Sara Luterman (@slooterman) May 28, 2020
Chinese netizens on Weibo aren’t happy about this either.
“Obviously it is incredibly shameful to use children as tools,” one user said. Others in the same comments thread called for Stauffer’s monetized videos to be removed.
“I don’t know if what the couple’s saying is true or not, but my heart hurts for the child. I feel like him getting abandoned again will make his condition even more complicated,” another wrote.
“First compensate for the money made…then compensate for the mental and emotional damage…if you don’t have the capacity and will then don’t go and hurt a child,” a user said.
Voices from the Past: Child Abuse and Suppressed Rumors, Then and Now
According to the Global Times, the Guangxi Civil Affairs Department — where Huxley was adopted from — is investigating the case.
While an employee explained that abandoning an adopted child is illegal in China, Stauffer and her husband may not face legal consequences because Huxley could have received US citizenship.
Stauffer mentioned in the video that they weren’t aware of additional special conditions Huxley had, like a sensory processing disorder and reactive attachment disorder. The Guangxi employee, however, said that the department notes everything about a child before adoption.
China started its international adoption program in 1991, and an estimated 110,000 children have been adopted through it. According to the US State Department, Americans have adopted over 80,000 Chinese children from 1999 to 2018. It’s estimated that up to 5% of adoptees in the US are un-adopted.
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