Wade recognized the legal problem with his ex-wife publicly for the first time on Thursday morning, issuing a message on Instagram.
Dwyane Wade, the former NBA star, is speaking out after his ex-wife, Siohvaughn Funches-Wade, claimed in a court document that he is attempting to profit off his transgender daughter Zaya’s “name and gender transition.”
Funches-Wade filed an objection in a Los Angeles County court on Tuesday, Nov. 1, demanding that Zaya Wade wait until she reaches “the age of majority” before making permanent changes to her identification, according to records acquired by TODAY.
TODAY reached out to Funches-legal Wade’s team and Dwyane Wade’s representative for more comment on Nov. 2, but did not get a response.
Wade has finally officially acknowledged the legal predicament for the first time, publishing a message on Instagram early Thursday, Nov. 3.
“Since this must be the new method of parenting, I guess I have to answer these charges here, which is a damn shame,” Wade stated in an Instagram message. “While on a life-changing vacation to our motherland, Africa, I got a social media post accusing me of pushing our 15-year-old daughter to be someone she is not and to do something against her will. These are severe and damaging accusations that have harmed our children.”
Funches-Wade and Wade were married from 2002 to 2010, and they have a 20-year-old son named Zaire Wade. Wade has an 8-year-old son Xavier with his previous partner Aja Metoyer and a 3-year-old daughter Kaavia with his current wife Gabrielle Union.
“While none of us are shocked by Siohvaughn’s attempt to battle Zaya’s identification and her relentless desire to drag my reputation through the dirt,” he continued. “This report was released when Zaya was in class. This is a youngster who has maintained a 4.0 GPA in honors classes while dealing with unwanted and damaging attention and disputes over her gender and sexuality from people who are determined not to listen to her, much alone know her.”
Zaya Wade came out as transgender in 2020, and her father has publicly supported her since then. He addressed TODAY in June 2022 about the most important thing he has learned as a father: enabling his children to see their “true selves.”
“I believe we need to continue to evolve as parents and recognize that our children’s lives are not only about us,” he stated. “We didn’t have children to be little versions of ourselves. They’ll become who they are in this world, and it’s our duty to figure out what that is.”
“I maintain that our kid should be given the option to decide for themselves at the age of majority if they want to continue through with changing their name and/or gender,” Funches-Wade stated in court filings filed on Tuesday, Nov. 1.