Former NBA All-Star Dwyane Wade appeared on the I Am Athlete podcast to discuss parenting and the conversation around his daughter Zaya Wade

Dwayne spoke passionately about how important the show Pose was to his daughter and for his own understanding of sexuality and what not to do as a parent. 

One particular character and scene that resonated with both Zaya and Dwyane was Damon, who is thrown out of his home by his parents after they find him looking at gay magazines. 

“For the first time, she saw that she doesn’t have to live life like that. At that moment I was like, ‘Thank you for allowing me to be her father.’ Because there are lesser people out there who can’t get over themselves,” Dwayne said. 


The comment found its way to actor Ryan Jamaal Swain, who plays Damon on the show. Swain said the comments were an example of why representation is important, particularly for the LGBTQ+ community which is generally not seen on television. 

"WHY WE TELL THE STORY: VISIBILITY MATTERS. LOVE TO THE WADE FAMILY. SPECIAL LOVE AND SO MUCH RESPECT FOR MY @PoseOnFX FOR ALLOWING ME TO BEAR WITNESS TO Damon’s story," Swain wrote on Twitter. 

Dwyane went on to say that in his view, good parenting is about supporting children on their journey as opposed to trying to change them into what you want.

Dwyane, who has four children including Zaya, told the show's hosts that he always wanted to provide his children with unconditional love as they figured themselves out. 

“I promised myself if there’s one thing I would do is that no matter what, when I decided I was going to be a parent, that I was going to love unconditionally,” Dwyane told the hosts of the show.

“All I want them to do is be happy in life and to be themselves. Whoever you are, whoever you’re going to be, it’s my job as your father to facilitate those things and to put you in a position to succeed. It’s not my job to change who you are. It’s my job to sit down and understand who you are and where you’re coming from,” Dwyane said. 

Dwyane has previously spoken about how much Zaya is teaching him and how much he has grown as a man since Zaya decided to come out as transgender.