Jonathan Van Ness Opens Up About Living With HIV (Photo: Instagram)
Queer Eye's Jonathan Van Ness has opened up to his struggle of living with HIV, previous battle with addiction and being a sexual abuse survivor in his memoir, ‘Over The Top’. Sitting down with a daily for his memoir, the 32-year-old reality star revealed about how he had been mentally preparing for Sept. 24, in the hope it'll break the stigma surrounding HIV, “I’ve had nightmares every night for the past three months because I’m scared to be this vulnerable with people’’.
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Having the opportunity to write my book and share my story with you is the most important opportunity I’ve ever had. The first article about the book came out today from the @nytimes & I’m relieved I can speak fully about the things that shape my experience in life. The book speaks to some extremely difficult times but it’s also filled with my humor, joy and voice & I can’t wait to share it with you fully. Thanks so much for your support so far, it means the world. Article link in bio ðŸÂ³ï¸ÂðŸŒˆ ðŸ“¸ Isak Tiner words by Alex Hawgood
"It's hard for me to be as open as I want to be when there are certain things I haven't shared publicly," he says.
‘’There are issues that need to be talked about’’ the star the 32-year-old said adding that he was initially unsure about whether to publicly discuss it in the wake of the success of Netflix’s “Queer Eye,” the rebooted makeover series starring the “Fab Five” that premiered in February 2018.
“And then I was like, ‘The Trump administration has done everything they can do to have the stigmatisation of the LGBT community around me,’” he said.
The three-time Emmy nominated star midway the interview also revealed about how he was abused as a child, “For a lot of people who are survivors of sexual assault at a young age, we have a lot of compounded trauma,” he said.
“I was too fat, too femme, too loud and too unlovable,” he added as he talked about his journey growing up in Quincy, Illinois, becoming his high school’s first male cheerleader and dealing with harassment, rumours and humiliation in school.
Adding that he is fully relieved to be talking about the stigmas that he had been living with, Ness added, “I’m relieved I can speak fully about the things that shape my experience in life,” he wrote. His memoir, he said, “speaks to some extremely difficult times but it’s also filled with my humor, joy and voice & I can’t wait to share it with you fully.”
Jonathan said that he found out he was HIV positive at the age of 25 after he fainted while working with a client.
“That day was just as devastating as you would think it would be,” he wrote in his book.