Dwyane Wade Responds to Accusations That He's 'Pressuring' Daughter

Dwyane Wade Responds to Accusations That He's 'Pressuring' Daughter

Dwyane Wade is one of our favorite celebrity parents because of his unwavering support of his 15-year-old daughter, Zaya, who came out as transgender in 2020. While his large and beautiful family has rallied behind Zaya, some people have been outspoken critics of his supportive parenting

Following a name and gender change filed by the Wade family to officially change Zaya’s information, her biological mother, Siovaughn Funches-Wade, filed a petition to block the change. 

In legal documents obtained by People, Funches-Wade alleges that "[Dwyane] may be pressuring our child to move forward with the name and gender change in order to capitalize on the financial opportunities that he has received from companies.”

She further went on to claim that Wade stands to gain something from Zaya coming out as trans, saying he is "positioned to profit from the minor child's name and gender change with various companies through contacts and marketing opportunities including but not limited to deals with Disney."

Wade was quick to clap back at his ex's claims in a perfect and succinct Instagram post.

The news came to him while he is in the middle of a trip to Africa to celebrate the 50th birthday of his wife, Gabrielle Union. "While none of us are surprised by Siohvaughn's attempt to fight Zaya's identity and her unwavering attempt to drag my name through the mud, l'm very disappointed that she continuously find ways of centering herself and HER needs, without regard to her children," Wade said. "This report came out while Zaya was in class. This is a kid who has maintained a 4.0 GPA in honors classes while navigating all this unsolicited and harmful attention and debates about her gender and sexuality from those who are committed to not listening to her, much less even knowing her!"

Wade goes on to cite their lengthy and tense custody battle back in 2011 that ended in him receiving sole custody of their two children. According to the judge who oversaw the case, Siohvaughn was on "an unstoppable and relentless pattern of conduct for over two years to alienate the children from their father, and lacks either the ability or the willingness to facilitate, let alone encourage, a close and continuing relationship between them."

Further on in his statement, Wade claims he has attempted to connect Siohvaughn with Zaya's therapists, teachers and doctors to have a better understanding of her and her life. He says that she has refused to attend any of their daughter's school events.

"No one in our house would ever force Zaya or any of our children to do anything against their will, much less force an identity on them," the NBA legend asserted. "Siohvaughn has decided to pretty much be an absent parent to Zaya ALL ON HER OWN."

He ends by saying that his lawyers will be reaching out to nip these damaging claims in the bud.

While it may seem small, Wade's unwavering support for his daughter sets an amazing example to how children thrive when in a loving and supportive environment.

Photo courtesy of Neil Ramsus/BFA