On February 17, U.S. YouTuber Myka Stauffer posted a picture to Instagram of her little boy, Huxley, who she shared with her husband, James, sitting on her lap.
“The last couple days have been hard,” she captioned the image. “I don’t want to sugarcoat anything. We have had a lot of meltdowns, and lots of behaviours that have had us on our knees begging God for guidance!
“I wish autism and adoption trauma had a manual to direct you through it all.”
After two years of updates about adopting Huxley from China, about his additional needs and his various therapies, that was it — that was the last image Stauffer posted of her four-year-old son.
In a video announcement on her YouTube channel this week, the Ohio woman explained why.
“He needed more”: Myka Stauffer on relinquishing her adopted son.
Stauffer told her more than 700,000 subscribers that she and her husband had decided to relinquish Huxley to another family.
“After multiple assessments, after multiple evaluations, numerous medical professionals have felt that he needed a different fit in his medical needs,” Stauffer said in the video. “He needed more.
“There’s not an ounce of our body that doesn’t want Huxley with all of our being. There wasn’t a minute that I didn’t try our hardest.
“Do I feel like a failure as a mum? 500 per cent.”
The couple said they wouldn’t elaborate on the specific factors that led to their decision, both for legal reasons and for the sake of Huxley’s privacy. But they added he was now with his “forever family”.
“He is thriving, he is very happy, he is doing really well, and his new mummy has medical professional training and it is a very good fit,” Stauffer added.
And with that, the backlash began.