Former Miami Heat shooting guard Dwyane Wade recently announced that he is supporting his 12-year-old daughter Zaya who is choosing to be identified as “she” after originally being born as Zion. He spoke with Ellen Degeneres on The Ellen Show on Tuesday opening up about his daughter’s decision.
“Zion, born as a boy, came home and said, ‘Hey, so I want to talk to you guys. I think going forward I am ready to live my truth. I want to be referenced as ‘she’ and ‘her.’ I would love for you guys to call me Zaya,'” Wade said. Zaya’s mother is Wade’s ex-wife Siohvaughn Funches.
He continued, “When our child comes home with a question, when our child comes home with an issue, when our child comes home with anything, it’s our job as parents to listen to that, to give them the best information that we can, the best feedback that we can. And that doesn’t change because sexuality is now involved in it.”
Wade said he and his wife will continue to learn more about the LGBTQ community and have also been in contact with the cast of Pose which is an FX series about LGBTQ dancers in the African American and Latin American community in New York City.
During a discussion with former NBA players Stephen Jackson and Matt Barnes on the All The Smoke podcast, Wade said, “As we say in the hood, it’s ignant. I grew up with the same perspective as a lot of these people out here that’s a little igonant. I had to look myself in the mirror and say, ‘What if your son comes home and tells you he’s gay? What are you going to do? How are you going to be? How are you going to act? It ain’t about him. He knows who he is. It’s about you. Who are you?'”
He later added that he “watched my son — from day one — become into who she now eventually has come into.”
Wade’s wife Gabrielle Union
posted a video on Twitter voicing her support for Zaya.