Jonathan Van Ness Recalls What It Felt Like to Find Out He Was HIV Positive
Over the weekend Jonathan Van Ness revealed that he is HIV positive during an emotional interview with The New York Times about his new memoir, Over The Top. On Tuesday (September 24), the Queer Eye star opened up about his diagnosis and why he decided to share it with the world during a visit to The Today Show.
"I do have this very calm sense of, 'I did this for a reason,' and I stand by those reasons and I think it is really important for me to speak about the things I have talked about in this book," he shared with Hoda Kotb. "I think it was the right thing to do."
The 32-year-old then recalled how he found out he had HIV seven years ago while working as a hairstylist in St Louis, Missouri. "I had, like, not been feeling amazing…and the next thing I knew I was on my back on the ground…so I went home and went to bed, and the next day I went to Planned Parenthood and that was where I found out that I had HIV," he said. "I just remember it was the moment that you, like, dread hearing. It's the thing that I had, like, feared…It was something I had been very fearful of, as a small child."
Van Ness hopes that by telling his story, he can help lessen the stigma associated with the disease. "You take a pill every day and it basically kills all the copies of the blood and that means that you can achieve and maintain an undetectable viral load," he explained before gushing over his current lifestyle. "I have picked up figure skating, I have done nothing but get cuter and be able to work harder and longer hours. I feel like I’m thriving."
Watch the interview below.