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On Sunday, former NBA player Dwyane Wade posted photos of his 12-year-old son, whom he says is a transgender girl, to his Instagram account, praising the child as an LGBTQ+ leader while using female pronouns.
“Everyone allow her to re-introduce herself her name is Zaya Wade!” Wade captioned a photo of young Zaya Wade wearing a bright green tuxedo jacket and pink sash.
The child recently changed his name from Zion to Zaya to coordinate with the gender “transition.”
“Last night was Zaya’s first red carpet and we couldn’t have been prouder of how she handled the questions that were asked of her,” the former Miami Heat guard wrote. “She has emerged as one of the young faces and voices for the LGBTQ+ community. #truthawards.”
Wade, his wife, actress Gabrielle Union, and Zaya attended the Better Brothers LA’s Truth Awards together on Saturday night. According to E! News, the award ceremony “highlights the accomplishments of the Black LGBTQ+ community and its allies.”
According to the outlet, the three appeared on stage together “to honor a friend,” and Wade spoke about Zaya.
“When our 8-year-old daughter, Zaya Wade, came home and said she had something to tell us, when she came out to us, as a family, we admitted that weren’t as educated about the LGBTQ+ plus community as we should have been,” Wade told the audience.
The athlete reportedly said that he and Union turned to a “male couple” to help them “navigate the right language to use, the questions to ask, and what to listen for,” with regard to the young boy’s gender.
“They also reminded us to make sure Zaya knew her community and felt the love and support inside and outside from home,” Wade continued. “From working closely with Zaya to design her room in our homes to make sure that her most authentic self was represented and that her bedroom felt like her sanctuary. Now, that may seem small, but taking the time to make sure Zaya felt seen and heard as she created her own space for us was key. It was key to Zaya’s comfort and her confidence.”
In December, Wade similarly spoke about his son becoming who “she” is.
“I watched my son, from day one, become into who she now eventually come into,” he told the “All the Smoke.”
“And for me… nothing changes in my love. Nothing changes in my responsibilities. So, all I had to do now is get smarter, educate myself more. And that’s my job,” continued Wade, who recently retired from the NBA after an uber-successful career.
“First of all, you want to talk about strength and courage, my 12-year-old has way more than I have,” he said. “You can learn something from your kids.”
After Wade noticed Zaya was not on the “boy vibe” that his other son was on, he said he questioned if the boy was gay and how he would feel about that. Apparently, the couple realized Zaya was really a girl.
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Everyone allow her to re-introduce herself her name is Zaya Wade! Last night was Zaya’s first red carpet and we couldn’t have been prouder of how she handled the questions that were asked of her. She has emerged as one of the young faces and voices for the LGBTQ+ community. #truthawards