If you’ve been visiting Zaya Wade’s Instagram page lately, you may have noticed that she couldn’t leave a comment.
That’s because her father, Dwyane Wade, decided to limit who can comment on her posts. Dwyane suggested it was a joint decision between him and his wife Gabrielle Union and explained why on Twitter.
“For Zaya’s mental health and privacy, we have decided not to allow hate to enter her comments,” he wrote, in response to a Twitter user who tagged him and Gabrielle in a tweet that appeared to ask about Zaya’s comments. Zaya.
Those who have followed him know that Dwyane has been open before about wanting to protect 15-year-old Zaya from online hate and trying to find ways to support her after she came out as transgender.
“Social media has been tough,” he once told Time. “She’s in high school, and those years are very critical and can be brutal. But for a lot of LGBTQ+ kids, it’s their only lifeline to their community. We’re trying to find that balance of not taking away their community, but also protecting it from being swamped.” with negativity and ignorance.
Outside of social media, however, he said things are very different. “We were both surprised and heartened by the number of people in our lives who have changed their traditional views of gender and identity,” Dwyane continued. “When we were clear with our loved ones that, in the same way that we are not going to be friends with people who assault their children or use racist language, we were not going to accept any discrimination or abuse towards the LGBTQ+ community, it was really not that difficult for them. We didn’t lose anyone. We gained a lot more educated and curious people who started their own internal dialogue.”
Hopefully there may be more of that now in Zaya’s comments section as well.