A supportive big brother. Dwyane Wade’s son Zaire Wade showed his support for his little sister Zaya amid drama with their mother, Siohvaughn Funches.
“I love you Zaya,” Zaire, 20, wrote via his Instagram Story on Thursday, November 3, along with a heart emoji. The post came just hours after Dwyane, 40, spoke out against his ex-wife’s petition to block their 15-year-old daughter Zaya from legally changing her name and gender. The teenager came out as transgender in February 2020.
In documents obtained by Us Weekly on Tuesday, November 1, Funches, 41, stated her “concerns 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, and will receive based upon [his] statements to me, on the basis of our child’s name and/or gender change.”
The former NBA star— who was married to Funches from 2002 to 2010 and shares both Zaire and Zaya with her — criticized the “serious and harmful allegations” via Instagram.
“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, I’m very disappointed that she continuously finds ways of centering herself and HER needs, without regard to her children. 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,” the Illinois native wrote in a lengthy post.
He went on to claim that his high school sweetheart has neglected her roles as a parent. “I’ve given her the opportunity to reach out to Zaya’s teachers, doctors and therapist over the years and even meet her friends, so that she could get her own understanding of our child’s needs for her LIFE. She won’t do it! She has not been to a school, recital, graduation, school dance, play date, practice, parent teacher conference, etc. and Zaya has given her every opportunity to try to get to know her,” he alleged.
Dwyane and his wife, Gabrielle Union — whom he wed in 2014 — have been supportive of Zaya since she came out.
“Me and my wife, Gabrielle Union, we are proud parents of a child in the LGBTQ+ community, and we’re proud allies as well,” the retired athlete said during a February 2020 appearance on The Ellen DeGeneres Show. “We take our roles and our responsibilities as parents very seriously.”
The Marquette alum is also father to son Xavier, 8, with Aja Metoyer and daughter Kaavia, 3, with Union, 50.