Queer Eye's Jonathan Van Ness reveals he is HIV-positive

21 September 2019, 19:30 | Updated: 21 September 2019, 19:33

Nicky Idika

By Nicky Idika

in a recent New York Times profile, Jonathan Van Ness opened up about being diagnosed with HIV at the age of 25.

Jonathan Van Ness has revealed he is HIV-positive. The 32-year-old Queer Eye star shared the news publicly in a New York Times interview ahead of his upcoming memoir, Over The Top–due to hit shelves Sept. 24.

Jonathan discussed his diagnosis as well as heartbreaking details of his upbringing. In his memoir, the reality star and activist also opened up about being addicted to drugs in his early 20s.

“It’s hard for me to be as open as I want to be when there are certain things I haven’t shared publicly,” Jonathan explained in the profile. "These are issues that need to be talked about.”

30th Annual GLAAD Media Awards New York – Arrivals
30th Annual GLAAD Media Awards New York – Arrivals. Picture: Getty

In Over The Top, Jonathan details receiving the HIV diagnosis at age 25.

Jonathan recounted having "flu-like symptoms" and actually fainting while doing a client's hair. Jonathan later went to Planned Parenthood where he was told that he tested positive for HIV.

In his memoir, Jonathan writes that the day he received the news was “was just as devastating as you would think it would be.”

Jonathan now describes himself as a “member of the beautiful HIV-positive community," but says that, when Queer Eye first came out, he was unsure whether to talk about his diagnosis.

“When ‘Queer Eye’ came out, it was really difficult because I was like, ‘Do I want to talk about my status?,” Jonathan explained. “And then I was like, ‘The Trump administration has done everything they can do to have the stigmatization of the L.G.B.T. community thrive around me.’”

Taking to Instagram after the news broke, Jonathan expressed relief at being able to share his story. "I’m relieved I can speak fully about the things that shape my experience in life," he wrote.