Marlon Wayans is opening up about parenting his transgender child.
The “White Chicks” star and stand-up comedian revealed Friday that his son Kai recently transitioned. He plans to delve into the topic during a future stand-up special, which he’s considering titling “Skittles” or “Rainbow Child.”
“Skittles, or Rainbow Child is about my daughter. I have a daughter that transitioned into a son,” Wayans told “The Breakfast Club” host Charlamagne tha God during an interview.
The “Scary Movie” actor is father to Kai, 23, and Shawn, 21, whom he shares with ex-girlfriend Angela Zackery.
“My daughter Amai is now Kai. And so I talk about the transition,” he said, adding that it’s not so much about Kai’s transition but rather his own transition as a parent “going from ignorance and denial to complete unconditional love and acceptance.”
“I think there’s a lot of parents out there that need to have that message, and I know I’m dealing with it. It was a very painful situation for me, but man, it’s one of the best, funniest hours I probably could ever imagine.”
Charlamagne tha God replied that he couldn’t imagine Wayans’ child approaching him with the news that they would be transitioning, because he jokes too much and takes nothing seriously.
“I always joke — they know — I told him you’re transitioning into your brother, you look just like him! I can’t tell the difference between her and Sean,” he jested, admitting that he’s still working on getting the pronouns correct. “But they’re brilliant. Most well-read, the smartest Wayans, smartest hands down.”
He added, “They know I love them, they see me trying and they’re like, ‘I’m happy.’”
Wayans said he has to respect his child’s wishes. “I just want my kids to be free. I want them to be free and spirit free and free to be themselves,” he said. “The more you know yourself, the more you can govern yourself, the more you live your truth, the happier your existence.”
Wayans said that if transgender kids can’t get that in a household with their parents, how could he possibly send them out into the world.
“I’m just so proud of them for being them,” he added. “But that don’t mean that ain’t got jokes.”
Wayans told “The Breakfast Club” that he actually performed the set about his experience parenting a transgender child for what he said was “a William Morris event.”
“I felt like I want to do this set because it’s important to me. What’s important to me? Comedy. What’s important to me? My children. … And what’s important is change,” the comedian continued, adding that he wanted the people he was performing for to think about ways to be inclusive of this next generation.
He said he saw a lot of “gray hair” in the crowd, but wanted to convey that “these kids that we dealing with, they’re different, right? And we can’t have our old ways and expect to do new things. So please embrace the new.”