"There is nothing more beautiful than watching your child feel the joy of exploring what it means to be true to themselves," Khary Payton wrote in his post

By Jen Juneau
June 16, 2020 12:16 PM
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Karter Payton
Khary Payton/ Instagram; Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty

Khary Payton is one proud papa.

On Monday, The Walking Dead star introduced fans and followers to his older child, son Karter, sharing a photo to Instagram of the youngster wearing a helmet, elbow pads and a wrist guard.

"This my kid. One of the most happy, well-adjusted individuals I've ever known. My son, Karter. Karter with a K because it reminded him of my name. He chose it," Payton, 48, captioned the image. "You see, he was born female but has always identified as a boy. He thought it would be cool if I announced it on social media."

The actor went on to say he warned Karter that "there would be so many supporters but also a lot of jerks who would be harsh" — and his son responded, " 'Yeah, I know about trolls, daddy. I can handle trolls.' "

"Man, there is nothing more beautiful than watching your child feel the joy of exploring what it means to be true to themselves," Payton continued. "This is his journey, and I am here for it. I hope you all have the opportunity to feel the unquenchable love that I am feeling right now."

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Khary Payton
Tommaso Boddi/Getty

Payton's wife Stacy shared an adorable photo of Karter to her Instagram feed, raving about how "incredibly proud" she is of him for embracing his true self.

"I am overjoyed to introduce you to my son, Karter," Stacy captioned the image. "When he was born we thought he was a girl. We were mistaken. He is a boy. A smart, funny, brave, loving, magnificent boy."

"Karter is so confident in who he is and was thrilled for me to let everyone know that he's finally living as his true self. As a boy. As my son. As Karter," she continued. "I am so incredibly proud of him and feel blessed every single day to be his mama."

Karter is the older child of Stacy and Payton, who is known for his role as King Ezekiel on The Walking Dead. They also shares daughter Maya.

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Payton and Stacy regularly share photos of their children, both separately and bonding both as siblings and with their parents.

In March, the actor shared a too-cute family snapshot from Galaxy's Edge, the new interactive Star Wars-themed land at Disney Parks.

Payton posed with his son and daughter in front of the Millennium Falcon ship, with Maya rocking a pair of Minnie ears and Karter dressed in a hoodie and black baseball cap.

"GOOSE. BUMPS. Walking into #GalaxysEdge I love geeking out with my little lovelies. #rebels #starwars," he wrote in the caption.