Former NBA star Dwyane Wade is set to open up about his personal life in an upcoming documentary D. Wade: Life Unexpected. While the documentary will touch on his career on the court, Wade is also giving people a closer look at his family.
One of the subjects Wade decided to touch on in the documentary is the gender identity of his 12-year-old daughter Zaya, who was born Zion.
Wade sat down to discuss the decision to share a glimpse of such a personal story and moment to the public, but he hopes that it can be inspiring to others and open eyes to others who may not understand Zaya’s journey.
“Myself and my family, we love the fact that she doesn’t have to hide who she is,” Wade told Good Morning America co-anchor Robin Roberts. “She is our leader. I struggled on how much I wanted to talk about it in the doc, I actually did talk about it a lot, but I knew if I put it in the doc at all it would be a big conversation. This is no game to us. We’re about protecting her heart and about protecting her joy and we have to support them.
“As parents its our job to sit back and figure out and find the most information that we can. We’ve researched as many things as we can to try to help not only our family, but other people in this journey and along the way because one thing we do know as a family we’ve been through so many things that other families go through and they say ‘thank you guys for speaking out on it, thank you for being a face and a voice because we can’t.'”
"This is her life … this is no game to us. We're about protecting her heart. We're about protecting her joy. … To do that, we have to support them." @DwyaneWade spoke with @RobinRoberts about his daughter Zaya's gender identity. (via @GMA)pic.twitter.com/n5TtFm8DAf
— ESPN (@espn) February 18, 2020
“Zaya started doing more research. She was the one that sat down with us as a family and said, ‘Hey I don’t think I’m gay.’ And she went down the list and said this is how I identify myself — I identify myself as a young lady. I think I’m a straight trans, because I like boys,'” Wade said. “It was a process for us to sit down with our daughter and find out who she is and what she likes and not put something on her — we decided to listen to her and she’s leading us on this journey.”
Wade has been supportive of his daughter despite public backlash throughout the years, and he continues to show that acceptance and love is the way to properly support others.
D. Wade: Life Unexpected is a documentary from ESPN Films and Imagine Documentaries, the documentary will debut on Sunday, Feb. 23, at 9 p.m. ET on ESPN.