Dwyane Wade opens up about 12-year-old daughter coming out as transgender

Dwyane Wade opens up about 12-year-old daughter coming out as transgender

In an appearance on the most recent episode of The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Dwayne Wade opened about his 12-year-old daughter Zaya coming out as transgender.

“First of all, me and my wife, Gabrielle Union, we are proud parents of a child in the LGBTQ+ community, and we’re proud allies as well,” the former NBA star told Ellen. “We take our roles and our responsibilities as parents very seriously.”

Check out the touching interview below:

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.”

Explaining his daughter's story, Wade said Zaya was “born as a boy” and was “originally named Zion.” But when she was ready, Zaya came out to her father and stepmother, Union.

Credit: PA

"[She] 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,’” the former Miami Heat player recalled. “Now it’s our job to one, go out and get information, to reach out to every relationship that we have."

Wade then repeated the words of support and encouragement he shared with his daughter.

"I said, ‘You are a leader. You are a leader, and this is an opportunity to allow you to be a voice'. Right now it’s through us because she’s 12-years-old, but eventually it will be through her."

Wade shares daughters Zaire, 18, and Zaya with his ex-wife, Siohvaughn Funches, six-year-old son Xavier with Aja Metoyer and a 15-month-old daughter Kaavia with Union.