Gabrielle Union Gushes Over How ‘Proud’ She Is Of ‘Loving’ Stepchild Zaya, 12, For Coming Out As Transgender

Gabrielle Union shared an important message about respecting 'your children exactly as they are,' after Dwyane Wade revealed that his child, Zaya, is transgender.

Gabrielle Union, Dwyane Wade
Image Credit: Shutterstock/Michael Rozman/Warner Bros.Mic

Gabrielle Union, 47, wants you to “Meet Zaya.” That’s what the L.A.’s Finest star wrote over a video of her stepchild whom she shares with husband Dwyane Wade, 38, on the same day the retired NBA star confirmed that Zaya is transgender on the Feb. 11 episode of The Ellen DeGeneres Show. Like her husband, Gabrielle was nothing but supportive now that Zaya, previously named Zion, goes by she/her pronouns. “She’s compassionate, loving, whip smart and we are so proud of her,” Gabrielle wrote. “It’s Ok to listen to, love & respect your children exactly as they are. Love and light good people.”

Zaya reflected Gabrielle’s message about acceptance in the video that her stepmom shared to Instagram and Twitter. In the clip, Zaya is riding in a golf cart with her dad, Dwyane, and delivers an important PSA. “Just be true to yourself. What’s the point of being on this earth if you’re gonna try to be someone you’re not? You’re not even living as yourself….be true, don’t really care about the stereotypical way of being you is,” Zaya declares.

That led Dwyane to pose this question: is it worth it to be yourself, “Even when people are being mean and even when people are getting hurt because they’re trying to be themselves? And even through that, you still want people to make sure that they live their truth?” Zaya encouraged others in her position to remain strong. “I know it can be tough,” Zaya admits. “Definitely. But I think you push through, and be the best you. Especially more recently; it’s become more accepting. Even though there’s still a lot of people out there who are upset… But I think that even in hard times, you just gotta push through.”

Gabrielle’s uplifting attitude reflected Dwyane’s while he opened up about Zaya to Ellen DeGeneres. “Zaya, our 12-year-old, came home — I don’t know if everyone knows, originally named Zion; Zion, born as a boy — came home and said, ‘Hey, so I want to talk to you guys. I think going forward, I’m ready to live my truth. And I want to be referenced as she and her. I’d love for you guys to call me Zaya,'” Dwyane revealed on Tuesday’s episode. The former Miami Heat player was nothing but respectful. “Once Zaya came home and said, ‘Call me Zaya,’ and ‘I’m ready to take on this,’ I looked at her and said, ‘You are a leader. It’s our opportunity to allow you to be a voice,'” he recalled.

Dwyane also added that he and Gabrielle “are proud parents of a child in the LGBTQ+ community, and we are proud allies as well.” Gabrielle proved this by celebrating alongside Zaya at the 2019 Miami Pride Festival (Dwyane couldn’t attend due to work).

“We take our roles and responsibility as parents very seriously,” Dwyane continued telling Ellen. “So when our child comes home with a question, when our child comes home with an issue, when our child comes home with anything, it’s our job as parents to listen to that, to give them the best information we can, the best feedback we can And that doesn’t change because sexuality is now involved in it.” Dwyane also has two sons, Xavier, 6, and Zaire, 18, in addition to his daughter, one-year-old Kaavia, his first child with Gabrielle.

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