Dwyane Wade hit back at his ex-wife Siovhaughn Funches’ “nonsensical” attempt to block their daughter Zaya’s name and gender change in a new court filing Monday.
The retired NBA player advocated for Zaya’s right to “live more comfortably and honestly in all aspects of her life” in documents obtained by Page Six.
“This petition is about allowing Zaya to take on the milestones of being a young adult with confidence and joy,” the doc read.
The athlete, 40, explained how the legal changes would act in the teenager’s “best interest” in many areas of her life “from simple introductions and food orders, to applying for a driver’s license and filling out college applications.”
The filing concluded, “While it certainly would have been preferable for Zaya’s mother to be supportive of this important part of Zaya’s journey, Zaya should not be forced to put her life on hold while she waits for Siohvaughn to acknowledge and accept her truth.”
Funches, 41, accused Wade earlier this month of “pressuring” their child to “move forward” with a name and gender change “in order to capitalize on financial opportunities.”
The counselor, who used her daughter’s deadname in the filing, requested Zaya make the changes herself when she is “at the age of majority.”
Wade clapped back at his former partner, whom he divorced in 2010, via Instagram.
“I’m very disappointed that she continuously finds ways of centering herself and HER needs, without regard to her children,” the ex Miami Heat player wrote in a lengthy social media statement, calling Funches an “absent parent” who “won’t … reach out to Zaya’s teachers, doctors and therapist.”
Wade went on to write that he and wife Gabrielle Union would never “force Zaya or any of [their] children to do anything against their will, much less force an identity on them.”
The Olympian, who is also the father of Zaire, 20, Xavier, 9, and Kaavia, 4, has publicly supported Zaya since she came out in February 2020.
Wade told Ellen DeGeneres at the time that he was a “proud parent” and a “proud ally.”
The “Father First” author initially requested Zaya’s name and gender change in August.
Wade noted that while he had “full authority” to proceed without Funches’ consent as he obtained sole custody in 2011, she had been told as a “courtesy.”