Jonathan Van Ness is HIV+ and he wants to tackle stigma

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The Queer Eye groomer reveals that his HIV status is positive, but his mindset about it is positive too, so he wants to tell the truth and to dispel some myths because of which people who live with HIV are so stigmatized in the British (and the worldwide) society. He also revealed that in childhood he survived a sexual abuse from an older boy and it took years for him to recover from the moral trauma he received then. In his early teens he would meet up with older men for sex, and when he went to college he quickly developed a drug addiction. Running out of money and not wanting to ask his mother for more, he started to have sex for money or for drugs. But HIV is something that, contrary to the stereotypes, was not brought in his life by sharing needles or having unprotected sex. He got it from the client whom he accidentally cut when he already worked as a hair stylist. He now proudly describes himself as “member of the beautiful HIV-positive community,” although he was seriously concerned about how other people might get it. “When Queer Eye came out, it was really difficult because I was like ‘Do I want to talk about my status?’ And then I was like, ‘The Trump administration has done everything they can do to have the stigmatization of the LGBT community thrive around me.’I do feel the need to talk about this,” said Van Ness.

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