The real world: New Orleans The star Danny Roberts is best known for his passage through the MTV series almost 18 years ago, but today he is opening up about his life like never before.
Former MTV reality star said Entertainment Weekly that he is living with HIV.
"The reason I want to share this story is that I spent so much time fighting and overcoming my own misconceptions and fanaticism," he said. "It's hard to admit the negative feelings I had about a group of people and the state of being based on invented stories."
He revealed that he discovered the diagnosis during a phone call with his doctor in 2011. He had woken up in a pool of blood and called his doctor to tell him what happened. His doctor knew that Roberts was HIV positive from a recent checkup and planned to tell him in person, but instead he told him the news over the phone.
"My first reaction was shock, then I got angry, then a lot of denial, those early years were very difficult and very lonely, you do not know who to turn to and people do not know what to say," Roberts said. He said. "The last thing I want is to have pity, I just want people to know and be conscious, I also knew very little, so I understand."
During his time in The real worldRoberts, without realizing it, became the poster boy of the movement against the "Do not ask, do not tell" policy that has since been canceled, which prohibited homosexuals from openly serving in the army. He was dating a military officer whose face was hidden by MTV so he would not be discharged like the other 1,200 service members that were that year.
Since his time at MTV, Roberts has retired from the public eye and now works as a digital design recruiter in New York City, and is the father of a 2-year-old adopted girl.
Roberts said it has been "undetectable" since its diagnosis, meaning the virus is so low that it can not be measured with a blood test and can not be transmitted sexually, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Roberts praised recent advances in medicine that have battled the disease, including a treatment called "PrEP" that has been effective in reducing the spread of HIV.
"Drugs have come this far, it's amazing where we are and where we might be not far away in the future," he said, adding that living with HIV is like "having an old and horrible cell phone with a huge application that consumes your Energy".
The name Real world co-star Kelley Limp as one of the friends who have supported him on his trip so far. "She is the sister of my life," he said. "She was one of the first people I turned to and spoke with, she has been strong and has helped me overcome this."
As World AIDS Day approaches on December 1, Roberts said he wants to revive the discussion about the disease and help those diagnosed with HIV to avoid the pain it endured. "I had so many negative feelings that I was forced to face," he said. "I've been on a trip like that to overcome that, in a way, this really has benefited my second exit."
After the Entertainment Weekly published article, Roberts took his Instagram Stories to pay tribute to his friends and the medicine that helped him survive.
"What I'm really grateful for this year is medicine and a handful of friends who have been rocks in turbulent waters," he wrote. "Without the incredible advances in medicine, it is likely that I have left now, it is a terrifying reality to face … mortality, thanks to all for the support and the outpouring, it really means a lot at a time when last year he felt so Dark, happy thanksgiving! "