Dwyane Wade ‘proud parent’ of a child in the LGBTQ+ community

The former NBA player talked to Ellen DeGeneres about how he has supported his 12-year-old since she told him she wanted to be referred to using female pronouns.

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Dwyane Wade spoke with Ellen DeGeneres about his 12-year-old, Zaya, who was originally named Zion.


Dwyane Wade is sharing a proud parenting moment. 

During Tuesday’s episode of “The Ellen DeGeneres Show,” the former NBA player talked to DeGeneres about how he has supported his 12-year-old since she told her parents she wanted to be referred to using female pronouns.

“Once Zaya … originally born Zion as a boy — came home and said, ‘Hey, so I want to talk to you guys. I think going forward I’m ready to live my truth, and I want to be referenced as ‘she’ and ‘her.’ I would love for you guys to call me Zaya,’” he recalled. “So internally, now it’s our job to … go out and get information, to reach out to every relationship that we have.”

Wade said his wife, Gabrielle Union, reached out to the cast of the FX show “Pose” to help get informed. “Pose” is a drama series centered around Black and Latino LGBTQ characters.

“We’re just trying to figure out as much information as we can to make sure that we give our child the best opportunities to be her best self,” Wade said.

He recalled telling Zaya she had an opportunity ahead of her.

“I looked at her and said, ‘You are a leader. You are a leader and this is our opportunity to allow you to be a voice,’” he said. “Right now it’s through us because she’s 12 years old, but eventually it’ll be through her.”

Wade, 38, is also father to Zaire, 18, and Xavier, 6. He and Union, 47, welcomed daughter Kaavia in November 2018. 

“First of all, me and my wife … are proud … parents of a child in the LGBTQ+ community, and we’re proud allies as well,” he said. ”And we take our roles and our responsibility as parents very seriously.”

He continued: “So 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,” Wade said. “And that doesn’t change because sexuality’s now involved in it.”

Read more at usatoday.com.

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