The YouTube Couple Adopted an Autistic Child, Made Content With Him, and Boosted Their Views for Years, Then They Placed Him in a New Home

The Stauffer tragedy

Myka and James Stauffer sat in front of the camera, announcing the controversial news that their son was no longer with them.

The couple had just placed their adopted son with a new family.

“Do I feel like a failure as a mom? Like 500%.

Anything that happened in the home that was hard for Huxley that’s not fair for me to put out there publicly that’s his privacy.

This decision has caused so many people heartbreak, and I’m sorry for letting down so many women that looked up to me as a mother. “ — Myka

Myka and James Were Youtubers

Myka and James Stauffer were vloggers with two personal and one family channels.

They created content for their family channel on YouTube by documenting their life as a large family.

Myka posted content like pregnancy updates, mommy hacks, and vlogs.

Myka and James had birthed three children. Then, the two began talking about adopting a child in May 2016.

The couple specifically wanted a child with special needs. Myka stated in a YouTube video that she was very comfortable dealing with children who have special issues.

Myka went on to say she was comfortable with 99% of the possible conditions that a special needs child could develop.

So, Myka posted videos getting into detail about the adoption process.

Myka and James had found a child to adopt from China. And from the adoption agency, they found out that the child had autism.

Although the couple was initially affected by the realization and scared, they still wanted to adopt the boy.

The Adoption Doctor Warned the Stauffers

Myka and James Stauffer — image from Insider/YouTube

Meanwhile, the adoption doctor tried to dissuade Myka and James from adopting the boy.

The doctor was very worried about the condition of the child. He warned them that his condition could progressively worsen, making it difficult for them.

In addition, the child would need a lot of necessities and treatments. But Myka and James believed that the doctor was wrong.

“He almost discouraged us from adopting him. Like saying that this is going to be severe, this is going to be a lot. We don’t know what unknown elements could be. When I heard all the things that that doctor was telling us, it kind of went in one ear and out the other.”

So, the couple and their three children flew to China in October 2017 to bring their adoptive son, Huxley, home.

They posted so many updates once Huxley was home.

These videos showed their subscribers how well he was developing and well blending into the family.

The Stauffer YouTube Channels Grew

The Stauffer channels gained a lot of subscribers because of how touching and sweet the adoption videos were.

The family channel, The Stauffer Life, gained nearly 330,000 subscribers, while Myka’s channel gained over a million subscribers. People were happy to see Huxley doing well and building relationships with his new family.

Myka sometimes expressed the difficulties of raising Huxley.

But their son wasn’t returnable. They would never return him to China due to his condition.

“He’s our son, and that’s that. We are not going to return him.

He’s our boy.” — Myka

Then just over a year later, Myka got pregnant with a baby boy. Myka gave birth to her son in June 2019. That meant that the Stauffers now had a total of five children.

However, shortly after giving birth, subscribers began noticing that Huxley stopped appearing in videos. Myka also stopped making update videos on Huxley.

Then Myka posted an Instagram photo of Huxley captioned;

“Last month was the hardest month I’ve ever had as a mama, but I’m still working through it. But instead of leading with my heart, I’m following yours. #adoption trauma

The Stauffers Were Processing Huxley’s Re-homing

Meanwhile, Myka and James were already in the process of giving away Huxley to a new family after nearly two years.

The couple posted an update video on YouTube stating that they had to get Huxley a new home. They claimed the doctors told them their son needed more than they could provide.

Afterward, the couple continued to post on their personal channels as if nothing had happened.

Myka posted cleaning videos, spring decorating videos, what I eat videos and morning routines. Myka also changed her bio from “mommy of five” to “mommy of four.” James continued posting his car content.

The YouTubers’ behavior enraged many people.

Myka seemed like she gave up on her son because of his special needs, which she was warned about prior.

So Myka clapped back.

She said they would never give up on a special needs child.

But a lot of scary things had happened within their home from Huxley towards their biological children. And Huxley had allegedly shown emotions that meant he wanted to change homes.

But Huxley was non-verbal, and there was no way he could have communicated that he no longer wanted to live with the Stauffers.

Nonetheless, if it was one of their biological children who behaved like that, they’d have no choice but to seek help.

The Stauffers Were Investigated

Myka Stauffer with Huxley — image from 2017 YouTube Video

Meanwhile, the Stauffers were put under investigation.

The police received tips from people concerned about Huxley’s safety before his re-adoption and the safety of the other biological children.

No charges were filed on the Stauffers.

The investigation report stated that the Stauffers had followed a legal channel in adopting Huxley.

Also, the Stauffers stated the problems they had to deal with while staying with Huxley, according to the report.

Myka said Huxley would go into a closet and rock when he came home with them.

She stated that she had records from her former son’s therapist because he self-injured from excessive thumb-sucking. His skin would be raw, and he would have blisters from sucking his thumb.

So Myka used duct tape on his thumb because they would purchase thumb guards for him, but he would rip them off.

Myka claimed that they didn’t adopt Huxley to gain wealth.

All the money they made from videos featuring his journey went back into Huxley’s expensive care.

The Stauffers said they started a GoFundMe at the beginning of the adoption process and raised around $800. The adoption cost $42 000 dollars and the $800 went towards the initial home study.

They also claimed that they received multiple calls from medical professionals and other people who watched Huxley telling them that they couldn’t care for him anymore.

In addition, multiple people had quit on them due to Huxley’s aggression towards the other kids.

One of the reasons they chose to re-home Huxley was they had to hire a full-time caregiver, and it was expensive.

The Aftermath

The companies that worked with the Stauffer family dropped them after the incident.

Myka and James deleted their family channel, and Myka later deleted her personal channel.

The Stauffers legal team stated;

“In coming to know our clients, we know they are a loving family and very caring parents who would do anything for their children.

Over time, the team of medical professionals advised our clients it might be best for Huxley to be placed with another family. Micah and James were forced to make a difficult decision, but it is in fact the right and loving thing to do for this child.”

Sources: Spill, Tea Spill

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