Basketball star Dwyane Wade discussed the fears he experiences when his trans daughter Zaya leaves the house.

During the Time100 Summit event on 7 June, the NBA legend sat down with CNN and praised Zaya for her confidence during her coming out journey.

“I mean, I went years without telling my chef that I didn’t like cilantro in my burger – and that was hard as an adult,” he explained.

“It took me years to have the confidence to say that. My daughter, eight years old, came home and had the confidence to say: ‘This is who I am. This is who I’m going to be.'”

Wade first opened up to the world about Zaya’s gender identity in 2020 on The Ellen DeGeneres Show.

During his appearance, the philanthropist said he and his wife Gabrielle Union are “proud parents of a child in the LGBT+ community” and “proud allies”.

Elsewhere in his interview with CNN, Wade revealed that after she came out he began to have conversations with Zaya to get a better grasp on her life and gender identity.


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“I started having to have a little bit older conversations with her about life and really get a chance to understand because she knows things and herself and I don’t… And I’m still learning, and there’s still information out here, but just to sit down with her and show her that I’m concerned and I care, that I want to know more, that I want to learn,” he said.

“I think that was the thing that kind of made her relax, a little calm, a little bit more comfortable coming to me. She tells me things and I have to listen to her because this is her life.”

Towards the end of his interview, Wade slammed the numerous anti-trans laws in the United States and called the harmful bills “a joke”.

“This is our life, we live this. So when you’re out there making rules and if you’re not experiencing this, if you’re not living this, and you’re just out there signing away and making laws, that’s not right, that’s a joke,” he said.

“I just think we’re losing our humanity, we’re losing the human side of us. As blessed as my daughter is to have parents who can support her, I’m still afraid every moment she leaves her house – and not just because of gun violence, but because of the way that people perceive her in this world.”

Watch Dwyane Wade’s full interview here.