In a touching moment of living in their eternal truth, basketball star Dwayne Wade revealed that his daughter, formerly known as his son Zion, has come out to his family with the request to be referred to she/her and to call her Zion. In an appearance on “The Ellen Show”, he revealed to the host that one day Wade’s 12-year-old child came home and expressed that she would like to be referred to as she/her and to be called Zaya, rather than her birth name Zion.
Dwayne Wade and Gabrielle Union dub themselves LGBTQ+ allies
When speaking to Ellen Degeneres, Dwayne Wade explained, “First of all, me and my wife, Gabrielle Union, we are proud parents of a child in the LGBTQ+ community. And we’re proud of allies, as well. And we take our roles and responsibilities as parents very seriously.”
“Call me Zaya”, Wades 12-year old requested
Wade explained how vital it is for parents to listen to their children when they express that they have something important to share. Dwayne Wade and Gabrielle Union’s values as parents were no different when Zaya came home one day and revealed her personal truth. “That doesn’t change because sexuality is now involved in it,” he said. “And so, once Zaya, our 12-year old, came home, and said: ‘Hey, I want to talk to you guys. You know, 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 familial support gives hope to other transgender children
Dwayne Wade’s unwavering support of his daughter is not only inspirational, but gives hope to other children in the LGBTQ+ community who may be too scared to come out and reveal to their parents exactly how they want to live and be represented in this world. In a video posted by Wade’s wife and actress Gabrielle Union, Zaya gave insight on her revelation with the self-awareness of someone three times her age. In the video Zaya’s father asks, “Even when people are being mean and even when people are getting hurt because they’re trying to be themselves? And even through that, you still want people to make sure they live their truth?” Zaya responds insightfully. “Yeah. I think, I know things can get tough. Definitely. But I think you push through and you be the best you.”
Brother Zaire relays sweet Instagram message to sister
In addition to parents Gabrielle Union and Dwayne Wade voicing their unfiltered support for their daughter, Zaya’s big brother Zaire also came out in support his brave sister. Captioned to a picture of the siblings as children, Zaire gushed, “Man I remember bugging my mom as a kid telling her I wanted a brother so bad. I was the only child looking for company and someone to look after and take care of,” Zaire explained. “I have been blessed to have my best friend Zaya with me for 12 years. We did everything together…we fought we played, we laughed, and we cried. But the one thing we never did was leave each other behind.”
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Man, I remember bugging my mom as a kid telling her I wanted a brother so bad. I was the only child looking for company and someone to look after and take care of. I have been blessed to have my best friend, Zaya with me for 12 years. We did everything together…we fought, we played, we laughed and we cried. But the one thing we never did was leave each other behind… I’ve told you that I would lay my life down to make sure you are ten toes down and happy on this earth. I don’t care what they think Z, you are my best friend and I love you kid, and if it means anything, just know there’s no love lost on this side ✊?
He continued, “I’ve told you that I would lay my life down to make sure you are ten toes down and happy on this earth. I don’t care what they think Z, you are my best friend and I love you kid, and if it means anything, just know there’s no love lost on this side.”
Unwavering support for both Zaya and her family has come out of the entertainment industry in droves including support from transgender activist, author, and producer, Janet Mock.
We LOVE to see it! Black parents exhibiting that unconditional love for their child who’s doing the courageous work of being her perfect trans girl self in a world that ain’t yet ready. We got you Zaya, @gabunion @DwyaneWade & fam! https://t.co/iDKsnvkJUG
— Janet Mock (@janetmock) February 11, 2020
The public support and bravery of Zaya is sure to save a lot of lives in the LGBTQ+ community.
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