untung99.biz: A Timeline of Gabrielle Union and Dwyane Wades Romance

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After more than a decade together, it’s fair to say that Gabrielle Union and Dwyane Wade aren’t shy about sharing intimate insights into their relationship — the good, the bad and the hilarious alike.

The pair first met in 2007 while co-hosting a sponsored Super Bowl party but didn’t start dating until 2009. They made their official red carpet debut as a couple in 2010, and from there, their romantic journey quickly took flight. The NBA star and the Bring It On actress went on to get married in Miami in August 2014, with Gabrielle becoming the stepmom to Dwyane’s 21-year-old son, Zaire, 16-year-old daughter, Zaya, and 9-year-old son, Xavier, and together they are parents to 4-year-old Kaavia James.

During their nine years of marriage and 14 years together in total, the couple has been through many ups and downs both in the public eye and privately. They’ve called it quits, battled egos, struggled through infertility issues and waged war against the bigoted minds of many for their family. And through it all, they’ve proven that communication is key.

From raising their blended family to co-authoring a children’s book together, keep reading for a full breakdown of Gabrielle Union and Dwyane Wade’s relationship.

First Meetings and Finding Love Amid Chaos

According to Gabrielle, when she first met Dwyane while co-hosting a sponsored Super Bowl party in February 2007, it wasn’t love at first sight. At the time, the former Miami Heat player was still married to his ex-wife, Siohvaughn Funches, and Gabrielle was a year out of being divorced from her first husband, retired NFL player Chris Howard.

In 2014, the Perfect Find star recalled their first meeting with Glamour, saying, “When I met Dwyane, his ‘résumé’ looked like crap: athlete, going through a divorce, nine years younger than me. None of that screamed, ‘Let’s have a lasting relationship.’ Then, after I had a heart-crushing breakup with yet another immature jerk, I thought, it can’t be any worse if I date a fetus. Let’s just see what happens. Turned out he’d been on his own since he was 15. He had wisdom that comes with facing an insane amount of adversity. He’s sweet, funny, honest about his shortcomings. When I put my preconceived notions to the side, I found someone cool.”

The two sparked dating rumors in 2009, particularly after being seated together at Dwyane and Alonzo Mourning’s annual charity dinner, The Summer Groove, in July of that year. A year later, the duo made their red carpet debut at the dinner together, officially announcing their relationship to the public.

Vallery Jean/Getty Images

Two days later, they emphasized the reveal when they were spotted sitting courtside together at the Summer Groove All-Star Basketball Game held in Miami at the American Airlines Arena. The couple engaged in their first public moment of PDA when Dwyane planted a kiss on Gabrielle during halftime.

“It’s nice to be able to just live your life and not really care about what people are going to say, and just be free,” Dwyane shared with ESPN about going public with the actress while going through a tumultuous divorce. “It is nice that you can just move on with your life. This summer’s been real big for me for that. I’ve been getting a lot of things behind me — and God has continued to bless me — and a lot of it has been positive. It’s been a two-and-a-half, almost three-years hardship. But now it’s going away, and just don’t get myself in anything like this soon and I’ll be fine.”

According to the Boston Herald, the couple’s reveal came amid Dwyane’s bitter custody and divorce battle with Siohvaughn, who even sued Gabrielle for “emotional distress,” and claimed the actress engaged in “sexual foreplay” with Dwyane in front of the children in a lawsuit against her soon-to-be-ex-husband.

“I fought it [the lawsuit],” Gabrielle told Jet for a 2012 cover story. “My life is just too easy to track. So, we were submitting plenty of proof for the times she said I was in Miami. So, it was like, obviously you’re not telling the truth. And then the courts dismissed the case…I think people mistook me taking the high road as an admission of guilt. Dwyane and I made a decision very early to not react to the negativity.”

Larry Marano/Getty Images

Despite the drama, Dwyane and Siohvaughn’s divorce was finalized in 2010, and in March 2011, the athlete was awarded sole custody of Zaire and Zaya, the couple’s two children. At this time, he also had custody of his nephew, Dahveon.

A year later, Gabrielle and Dwyane appeared together on the cover of the February issue of Essence, where they opened up about wanting to go slow when it came to marriage.

“We’re not rushing it,” Dwyane told the outlet. “Both of us have been married before, and we understand that if we choose to marry again, we want it to be right. We both took failing at marriage hard. The next time it’s gotta be forever.”

A Break and a Baby

In early 2013, the couple decided to take break from their relationship when they couldn’t make their schedules work.

Looking back on this period, Gabrielle told Glamour that “when Dwyane and I broke up briefly in 2013, it was because of distance and scheduling. I finished filming [Being Mary Jane], then I flew to Vegas right away to start shooting Think Like a Man Too. I couldn’t take time off, and I missed some quality togetherness we desperately needed. Over the summer, I reassessed priorities. I’d always wanted an awesome career with back-to-back projects, but I realized I wasn’t willing to sacrifice my relationship for it. Moving forward, I decided my work schedule has to make sense for our family.”

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Dwyane Wade Opens Up About How He and Gabrielle Union ‘Make It Work’ In the Public Eye (Exclusive)

During their break, Dwyane fathered his son, Xavier, with actress and Basketball Wives star Aja Metoyer, who later gave birth to their son in November 2013.

Recalling the life-changing moment and the aftermath in her memoir, You Got Anything Stronger, Gabrielle shared: “It should go without saying that we were not in a good place in our relationship at the time that child was conceived. But we were in a much better place when he finally told me about the pregnancy. To say I was devastated is to pick a word on a low shelf for convenience. There are people – strangers who I will never meet – who have been upset that I have not previously talked about that trauma. I have not had words, and even after untold amounts of therapy I am not sure I have them now. But truth matters.”

She continued, “Each day, he had worked to be forgiven, and I had chosen to do so. And part of this journey of making peace with our love is also making peace with ourselves.”

Dwyane opened up about telling Gabrielle that he had fathered a child with someone else in his ESPN documentary, D. Wade: Life Unexpected.

“I had a child with someone else and I had to tell her. Hardest thing I’ve ever had to do is man up and tell Gabrielle Union that I’ve had a child with somebody else,” he said in the documentary. “I couldn’t sleep. I wasn’t eating.”

“When you hold something in that you know is going to come out and you have this information and you know it’s gonna f**k somebody’s life up, that you care about, that you love, if it don’t hurt you, then you’re not human,” Dwyane continued. “… Me and Gab just went through something that you never want to go through and we still came out of it.”

The couple reunited in April 2013.

Marriage and Growing a Family

Eight months after their reunion, Dwyane asked the Being Mary Jane star to marry him. 

Gabrielle announced the couple’s engagement on Instagram, sharing a photo of her sporting the 8.5-carat cushion-cut diamond engagement ring.

“Sooooo this happened… #Yessss,” she commented with a string of dancing emojis, clapping emojis and heart-eyed emojis.

Dwyane shared the same photo with the caption, “She said YES!!! @gabunion.”

Gabrielle later recounted on Good Morning America, sharing that the basketball star recruited his kids to be part of the proposal.

“They were like, ‘We wanna do a presentation for you.’ They like to do skits and songs and stuff, so we turn around, and they’re like, ‘Okay, we’re ready!’ and I turned back around and all the [kids] were holding up signs that said, ‘Will you marry us?'” she recalled, admitting that she didn’t think the proposal was “serious” at first, since Dwyane’s children had been asking the couple to get married for two years.

Then she said she saw Dwyane down on one knee with a ring in his hand. “And I was like, ‘Oh, this is serious! This is a thing! Yes! Of course, yes!’ ” she added.

The then 41-year-old actress and then 32-year-old NBA pro said their ‘I dos’ in front of friends and family in Miami at the Chateau Artisan Castle on Aug. 30, 2014. John Legend serenaded the couple with his hit single, “All of Me,” which became the unofficial anthem of wedding season 2014 after Legend penned it for his own wife, Chrissy Teigen.

Gabrielle previously told Arsenio Hall that they planned their wedding to be a family affair through and through, including “no bridesmaids, no groomsmen. It’s just us and the kids. And we’re just riding out, just us.”

The newlyweds departed for their three-part honeymoon days later, sharing their adventures on Instagram as they spent time on a “deserted island” in the Maldives before going on safari in Africa’s Serengeti. Their final stop was in the Seychelles islands.

In October 2017, Gabrielle opened up about her three-year struggle with fertility in her memoir, We’re Going to Need More Wine, detailing the couple’s heartbreaking struggle to have children of their own and the lengths she’d gone to in trying to conceive.

“I have had eight or nine miscarriages,” she wrote. “For three years, my body has been a prisoner of trying to get pregnant — I’ve either been about to go into an IVF cycle, in the middle of an IVF cycle, or coming out of an IVF cycle.”

Almost a year later, in August 2018, the then-45-year-old actress told a conference crowd in New York City that she had been diagnosed with adenomyosis, which could explain her health battles. The condition is a form of endometriosis, and affects the uterus.

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Gabrielle Union and Dwyane Wade Candidly Discuss Their Surrogacy Journey With Oprah Winfrey

“Towards the end of my fertility journey I finally got some answers,” she said, according to Essence. “Everyone said, ‘You’re a career woman, you’ve prioritized your career, you waited too long and now you’re just too old to have a kid — and that’s on you for wanting a career,’ she added. “The reality is I actually have adenomyosis.”

“The gag is I had it in my early twenties,” she continued. “Instead of diagnosing me, [doctors] were like, ‘Oh you have periods that last 9 or 10 days and you’re bleeding through overnight pads … perhaps there’s something more there. Every doctor I saw was like, ‘Let me put you on birth control.”

Then, less than two months later, Gabrielle and Dwyane’s prayers were answered when their daughter, Kaavia James Union Wade, was born on Nov. 7, 2018, via surrogate. 

The actress shared the happy news to her Instagram page, posting sweet photos of the couple cradling their new bundle of joy, with lyrics from Bill Withers’ song, “Lovely Day.”

“A LOVELY DAY ?????? We are sleepless and delirious but so excited to share that our miracle baby arrived last night via surrogate and 11/7 will forever be etched in our hearts as the most loveliest of all the lovely day,” Gabrielle captioned the sweet slideshow, which Dwyane also shared with the same caption. “Welcome to the party, sweetgirl! #onelastdance #skintoskin@dwyanewade ❤??.”

When discussing her daughter’s journey into the world, the She’s All That star told Oprah Winfrey in December 2018: “We want her to understand that she was so loved, wanted, desired, protected, and nurtured when she was just a thought,” Union said. “We want her to know everything it took to bring her into this world, usually around the time she starts talking back. We want her to really understand what we went through.”

Blessings, Books and Fighting Bigotry Together

When Dwyane’s child, Zaya, came out as transgender in February 2020, the family introduced the world to Zaya with a touching video featuring Dwyane and then-12-year-old Zaya on a golf cart together talking about being true to one’s self. 

“Meet Zaya. She’s compassionate, loving, whip smart and we are so proud of her. It’s Ok to listen to, love & respect your children exactly as they are. Love and light good people,” Gabrielle tweeted at the time.

“Don’t even worry about that, just be true to yourself,” Zaya said in the video, to those who worry about being judged. “What’s the point of being on this earth if you’re just going to try to be someone you’re not? It’s like, you’re not even living your true self, which is like, the dumbest concept to me. Be true and don’t really care what the stereotypical way of being you is.”

Meet Zaya. She’s compassionate, loving, whip smart and we are so proud of her. It’s Ok to listen to, love & respect your children exactly as they are. Love and light good people. pic.twitter.com/G2lLVdD2VT

— Gabrielle Union (@itsgabrielleu) February 11, 2020

During an appearance on The Ellen DeGeneres Show soon after, Dwyane opened up more about Zaya. 

“Zaya, our 12-year-old, came home… and said, ‘Hey, so I want to talk to you guys. I think going forward I’m ready to live my truth. And I want to be referenced as ‘she’ and ‘her.’ I would love for you guys to call me Zaya,'” Dwyane recalled. “And so internally, now it’s our job to one, go out and get information, to reach out to every relationship that we have.”

“Once [Zaya] came home and said, ‘Hey, you call me Zaya. I’m ready to take on this,’ I looked at her and said, ‘You are a leader. You are a leader. And this is our opportunity to allow you to be a voice,'” he continued. “Right now, it’s through us because she’s 12 years old. But eventually, it’ll be through her.”

Dwyane told ET that Zaya’s journey had taught him more about himself. 

“For me, it’s always about being able to adapt and being able to learn, and always being able to grow,” he shared. “I think coming from the inner city of Chicago early on, I was kind of closed-minded on a lot of things. And I’ve been with my wife, traveling the world, meeting people, going to different places, I’ve learned to keep my mind open, keep my eyes open, keep my heart open, keep my thoughts open.”

“That’s what I’ve been trying to do as I’m growing into the man that I’ve always dreamed of becoming,” Dwyane said. 

Since then, Dwyane and Gabrielle — and the rest of their family —  have proudly supported Zaya throughout her endeavors. From sharing sweet messages about unconditional love to using their platform to honor her journey and stand as allies with the LGBTQ+ community, the Wades are never shy about showing love for their own. 

In May 2020, Gabrielle released a children’s book, Welcome to the Party, inspired by the couple’s daughter, Kaavia, and celebrating surrogacy. 

“I wanted to create a love letter to my daughter to let her know that even though her entry into our family was a bit non-traditional, we love her and wanted her,” Gabrielle told People. “And she is celebrated.”

A year later, the couple released a children’s book inspired by Kaavia together, which they told ET was born from the toddler’s love for side eyes.

“When we started noticing that Kaavia was giving side-eye as a reaction to people not respecting her boundaries — you know, not sharing, just general poor behavior — we were like, ‘There’s something there and this could be the impetus of a great children’s book where we turn side-eye into this super power,” Gabrielle recalled.

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Gabrielle Union and Dwyane Wade Share How Their 2-Year-Old Inspired a ‘Shady’ Book (Exclusive)

“Oftentimes, we are looking at the reaction to something rather than the initial offense. So we want to be able to turn that reaction into, ‘This is a good thing, this is what acknowledging and assessing poor behavior is,'” she continued. “The we can set about gently correcting. And so you’re positioning these young Black girls and the friends, you’re empowering everyone to make gentle corrections, and then you lean into how good accountability feels and receiving corrections. It’s a positive thing.”

“I think some of the greatest TV shows we’ve ever seen, some of the greatest books that we read, [they are about], what lessons you can pull out of that,” Dwyane added. “Whether you’re two or whether you’re 39.”

As their devotion to their evolving family grew, so did the couple’s public displays of affection for one another. In November 2022, Gabrielle shared a video of herself reacting to her husband’s new wrist tattoo, a sweet homage to his wife to mark her 50th birthday.

The retired basketball star’s new body art was simple, but special: the actress’ initials and a heart on his wrist.

“The moment you find out your man has made you his 17th 🧐 tattoo. 🖤🖤🖤@dwyanewademade his best bday surprise for #SouthAfrica WadeWorldTour2022 🌍edition #Capetown Part 4,” she wrote on Instagram.

In a video she shared online, Gabrielle was filming the reveal of the tattoo when she gasped and shouted, realizing what tattoo he had gotten. 

“The reaction though😍😍😍👏👏,” a fan commented. 

In February 2023, the couple celebrated a legal win for the family after a Los Angeles judge granted Zaya her official name and gender change. In the court doc obtained by ET, Zaya’s name is officially Zaya Malachi Airamis Wade. In addition, the judge ruled that her sex markers on documents would match her gender identity.

The legal change comes months after Zaya’s mother, Siohvaughn, filed an objection to the court filings. 

“Last night she was so happy and we were just like *sings* ‘Say my name, say my name, ‘cause to some people it just feels like paperwork but to her it’s it’s her truth and it’s her reality and we support that,” Gabrielle told ET during the 54 annual NAACP Image Awards where the couple was honored with the President’s Award for their continued advocacy for the LGBTQIA+ community. “Being in her orbit you wanna catch up, you wanna keep up. I mean her first choice for college is MIT. This is not a dim bulb here, she’s incredibly smart, incredibly bright and a phenomenal leader. I’m just happy for her that she gets to be exactly who she is and we’re really happy about her Puma campaign.”

When asked about supporting their daughter — who came out as transgender in 2020 — Gabrielle noted that it’s “not hard to love your kid,” and that other people’s perception of their family is not their concern.

Frazer Harrison/WireImage

“I think someone else’s opinions of us are none of our business,” she said. “I think there’s a lot of hurt people out there and a lot of scared people out there who project their hurt and fears, unfortunate childhood trauma onto other people. I think that’s what we’re seeing across the board so I pray for those people while we celebrate ours.”

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Dwayne Wade Says He Looks Up to Daughter Zaya’s Courage as a Father (Exclusive)

Dwyane added, “I mean we understand, as my wife said, what’s going on in our world, what’s the temperature in our world. When it comes to the transgender community, Black transgender community. Even though we wish our 15-year-old daughter could just be and just go under the radar, her calling is bigger. So we’re gonna use this opportunity to continue to keep speaking, continue to keep supporting — until we get change.”

When asked about his teenage daughter using her voice to change the world at such a young age, the NBA champion couldn’t have been more proud.

“When you hear it like that, it’s heavy,” Dwyane told ET. “It’s so much. She’s a 15-year-old girl who just wants to be a 15-year-old and I think in the midst of it, we understand that you know responsibility is great. We’re gonna try until she gets that microphone and she can show the world who Zaya is. We’re gonna continue to try to lead the way Zaya would want us to lead with our voices, with our eyes and with our ears.”

50-50 on Forever

During a May 2023 interview with Noah Callahan-Bever on his Bloomberg Originals series, Idea Generation, Gabrielle went viral when she revealed the couple’s decision to split some of their finances. The actress and producer went on to explain that she still has a “scarcity mindset” with her money from when she was trying to make it in Hollywood.

“But in the other households that each of us have to support, there’s always this, like, gorilla on your back, that’s like, ‘You better work, b**ch, you better work. Oh, you’re going to sleep in?’ You know, somebody might not eat,” she explained. “I struggle with that, still. I think I just have more responsibilities for my money. I get nervous like, ‘Oh god, that movie didn’t open you know what does that mean? Do I – Am I … Am I going to have enough to hold everybody up?'”

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Gabrielle Union Seemingly Responds to Backlash of Splitting Bills ‘50/50’ With Dwyane Wade

Dwyane elaborated on their decision during an appearance on the Club Shay Shay podcast released on Monday. He explained to host Shannon Sharpe that the agreement came after a flippant comment he made to his wife when they lived in Miami. 

“I said something about it being my house that I paid for. My wife looked at me and said ‘You will never say that to me again when it’s something that we share,'” Dwyane explained. “So when we moved to [Los Angeles], my wife said ‘I got half on it [and] you will never say my house again — you can say that in the arena!'”

Dwyane went on to share that when it comes to their home, he and Union purchased it together. He also said that “anything that goes on with [Kaavia], 50-50, we share it together.”

“We decided that certain pieces of our life, we would share in it,” he added.

While he and Gabrielle split their finances evenly together, the former Miami Heat player explained that they each continue to provide for their loved ones. “I have 20 to 50 responsibilities and my wife has 20 to 50 responsibilities and when I say that, that means she has her mother, she has her sisters, she has her dad, so she has a lot of things she’s responsible for,” Dwyane said. “She pays 100 percent of that and you know what I do? I pay 100 percent of my life.” 

When it comes to their prenup, Dwyane said, “I told her the same way, ‘I’ll sign a prenup too. You’re a millionaire, you got money. You work hard for yourself.’ “

Watch the video below for more on Gabrielle Union and Dwyane Wade’s beautiful family!


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