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Dwyane Wade Opens Up About Supporting Son After He Came Out As Gay
- Updated: December 20, 2019
Dwyane Wade recently spoke up about supporting his gay son and sharing the lessons that he has learned from the experience.
Wade was a guest on the “All the Smoke” podcast with former NBA players Stephen Jackson and Matt Barnes earlier this week. During that conversation, he was asked by Barnes what it’s like parenting his 12-year-old son, Zion Malachi Airamis Wade, who is openly gay.
“First of all, you don’t talk about strength and courage,” the elder Wade replied. “My 12-year-old has way more than I have. You can learn something from your kids.
“In our household, man, that’s all we talk about. We talk about making sure our kids be seen by each of us. Me and my wife, we talk about making sure our kids understand the power in their voice. We want them to be whoever they feel that they can be in this world. That’s our goal. Understand you can be whoever, you can be whatever.”
The three-time NBA champion and his wife, actress Gabrielle Union, told their son what to expect and the negativity that will come later on.
“It’s not just even for my son’s sexuality, it’s just about being a young black man, or a black woman, right?” the elder Wade added. “So everything that comes with that.”
The recently retired Miami Heat star spoke about having a platform to let his voice be heard and why he responds to the backlash that he and his family receives. He previously responded on social media to those who criticized his son’s appearance on their family’s Thanksgiving photo.
“When I respond to things socially, I’m not responding because you hurt my feelings,” the elder Wade told Barnes and Jackson. “I’m not responding because I even care enough of what you’re saying.
“Why I’m responding is because I understand my platform. I understand that I’m speaking for a lot of people that don’t have the same voice that I have as a father.”
Later, the Heat legend shared what was going through his head when he started noticing that his son was showing signs that he wasn’t behaving the same way as his eldest son.
“I had to look at myself in the mirror when my son at the time was three years old and me and my wife were having conversations about us noticing that he wasn’t on the boy vibe that Zaire was on.
“And, I had to look myself in the mirror and say, ‘What if your son come home and tell you he’s gay? What are you going to do? How are you going to be? How are you going to act?’ It ain’t about him. He knows who he is. It’s about you. Who are you?
“All these people that’s out there saying those things, look at yourself. Understand that you’re the one that got the issues. You the one that got the problems. It’s not the kids. You decide that, yeah, they’re born a certain way and you say, ‘They got to be that way.’ That’s not life.
“I’ve watched my son from day one become into who she now eventually has come into. Nothing changes with my love. Nothing changes with my responsibilities. Only thing I have to do now is get smarter and educate myself more. And that’s my job”
Last April, the elder Wade and Union supported their son when he wanted to attend Miami Beach Pride.