Dwyane Wade wants his 12-year-old daughter to feel supported in the wake of her recent announcement as coming out as transgender.
Wade states his hopes for his older daughter are the same for his other children too.
“As I’m raising [Zaya], as I’m raising my kids, you just try to put them in the best situations to be able to succeed in life,” he says. “How I do that, and how me and my wife decide to do that, maybe different than another family, but we want them to know there’s always unconditional love, that it will always be [supported].”
Wade adds, “We’ve got you, no matter what. And we see you. … I see you how you see you.”
Wade has been a parent for almost two decades now but that doesn’t exactly mean he has his dad’s life figured out.
When speaking with PEOPLE, he opened up about how his perspective of parenthood has changed since he welcomed his first-child, Zaire, who is now 18-years-old.
Wade, who admitted he is “always scared” as a parent but is “scared in a different way now,” than when he first became a father at almost 20-years-old. Wade is a father to Kaavia James, 15 months, Xavier Zechariah, 6, and Zaya, 12, and is a guardian of nephew Dahveon Morris, 18.
“Now he’s 18 and I’m like, ‘He’s about to go to college’ — I’m even more scared,” Wade says in regards to his Zaire. “When a kid is born, they don’t come out with a pamphlet that’s like, ‘Okay, these are the directions for this kid.’ So you just figure it out and try to help raise someone who’s good and kind, and just characteristics that you want your kids to hopefully have. And that’s in you already.”
“You’re afraid because you don’t want to mess up; you don’t want anything to happen to them,” he goes on to share.
“But I think, ultimately, we all have it inside of us to help lead someone, whether that’s your kids, godson or goddaughter, niece or nephew, coworker — we all have it in us to lead. It’s no different when you have a kid.”
With a background in the creative and educational fields, Amelia Finefrock is freelance writer, singer-songwriter and nanny based in Chicago.
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