Dwyane Wade just made a very powerful statement about what it’s like raising a gay child coming from his hyper-masculine background as a former NBA star.

D Wade recently sat down with Matt Barnes and Stephen Jackson for an interview on their All The Smoke podcast, and opened up about the relationship he has with his 12-year-old son Zion—who now apparently uses “she” and “her” pronouns—and also the support he has for the LGBTQ community.

“I had to look myself in the mirror when my son at the time was 3 years old and me and my wife started having conversations about us noticing that he wasn’t on the boy vibe that Zaire [Wade’s other son] was on.

“And, I had to look myself in the mirror and say, ‘What if your son come home and tell you he’s gay? What are you going to do? How are you going to be? How are you going to act? It ain’t about him. He knows who he is. It’s about you. Who are you?’

“They born a certain way and you say they gotta be that way. That’s not life, man. I’ve watched my son from day one become into who she now eventually has come into. Nothing changes with my love. Nothing changes with my responsibilities. Only thing I got to do now is get smarter & educate myself more.

“I grew up with the same perspective as a lot of these people out here that’s a little ignorant. I grew up with a similar perspective. And, you meet people along the way that help you take those glasses off and put on some different ones. Look through life through a different lens. That’s what my wife has been able to do. So, it’s been cool.”

Wade went on to say that Zion, who sources say now uses the name “Zaya” and now identifies as a girl, is one of the strongest people he knows, and he’s learned a lot from her.

“You want to talk about strength and courage? My 12-year-old has way more than I have,” Wade said. “You can learn something from your kids.”

Wade added that he’s not speaking out because he’s offended by public opinion and comments he sees on social media, but because he’s aware of his platform and feels the need to speak out for LGBTQ rights.

“Everybody get used to it, man,” he said. “This is the new normal. So if anybody different, we looked at as different. You know what I’m saying? The ones that don’t understand it. The ones that don’t get it. The ones that are stuck in a box. You’re different. Not the people that are out here living their lives, man.”

Dwyane Wade and his wife, Gabrielle Union, have been publicly supportive of Zion/Zaya (Wade’s child from his previous marriage) over the past year, and even came under scrutiny for taking her to a Gay Pride Festival in Miami earlier this year.

Wade was also forced to defend Zion/Zaya on Twitter after Union shared a family on Instagram on Thanksgiving that showed the 12-year-old wearing a crop top and long white fingernails.

“Whatever you want to do, it is my job to support you and make sure you have all the tools to be as happy as you are while you are doing it,” Wade told Matt Barnes and Stephen Jackson about supporting his child.

Watch the full interview below:

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