Influencers who put down dog once cancelled adoption due to ‘no social media’ rule

Sinead Butler
Thursday 13 May 2021 13:55
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YouTube influencer couple Nikki and Dan Phillippi are receiving more online backlash, after a video has re-surfaced of them explaining why they cancelled adopting a child from Thailand.

The lifestyle influencers were already under fire for announcing on May 3 their decision to put down their Bull Terrier dog, Bowser - who they had for 10 years - because he bit their son and claimed the pet was “too old to rehome.”

Now a video from May 2018 is being reshared, in which the pair told viewers in a 26-minute video titled: “We’re not adopting from Thailand anymore.”

They said that one of the reasons they weren’t going through with the adoption because they wouldn’t be able to share images of the child on social media for a year.

The pair went through Holt International, a Christian organization that connects children to adoptive families and they informed the couple that Thailand has a law that prohibits the sharing of any images, photos, or videos of the child for up to a year.

“Nikki’s got a YouTube channel,” Dan explains. “We share a whole lot.”

Nikki said: “When that hit we literally were like ‘Oh what?’ So we were like going round the houses like trying to figure out how this could work like ‘Hashtag baby blur face’.”

Nikki also says the organisation warned that if she didn’t take the policy seriously then it could ruin the organisation’s relationship with the country and future adoptions for other families. 

“I almost Snapchatted while I was signing an NDA once,” Nikki said. “I’m going to totally mess up, and then I’ll ruin it for other families.”

Although not being able to share her child on social media was a factor, the couple say the main factor of them deciding against adopting were the possibility of the adoption not being final for up to a year and potentially jeopardising other families’ adoptions.

Nikki told viewers: “It came down to I could make some people mad or there could be cultural differences that end up making someone decide, ‘Oh we actually don’t want you to have our kids, so they’re coming home.”

They also weren’t comfortable with any foreign government in their business after they adopted a child.

“We just want the ability to do what we want to do without possibly causing harm or repercussions to other people and an entire organization for that matter,” Nikki explained.

Though, this didn’t stop the couple from looking to adopt from Korea just months later.

But four months later, they made yet another video announcing that they were no longer adopting from Korea too.

In the video, Nikki said: “Our adoption agency strongly feels that a Korean judge will not approve an adoption for us because of how public we are in our advocacy for adoption.”

They later reflected on their Thailand adoption decision in another video in 2019 and said that they have matured since then - explaining that they were “feeling a little paranoid” at the time as they “we didn’t like the idea of knowing that a foreign government could potentially take back our child up to a year later based off whatever they saw on social media.”

People were not happy with the couple’s actions and made their feelings clear on social media.

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