Danny Pintauro, the former star of the ABC series "Who's the Boss," has now revealed a secret that he's kept for the last 12 years: He is HIV-positive.
Pintauro said on Saturday's episode of "Oprah: Where Are They Now?" that he chose to reveal his status because he wants to raise awareness in the gay community about the dangers crystal meth and sex, which could lead to an "oncoming epidemic," according to People magazine.
"I'm HIV-positive," Pintauro told Winfrey. "And I have been for 12 years . . . There's this awful feeling of, 'I'm never going to be able to have a good relationship. No one's ever going to want me.'"
Pintauro said he was diagnosed in March 2003 while living in New York, and decided to keep his diagnosis a secret. He did say, though, that there was a sort of a silver lining in receiving the news.
"There was a sense of relief . . . It's backwards," Pintauro said. "You've spent so much time terrified that you're going to get it, and then you have it. You don't have to be terrified anymore."
Pintauro, who played Jonathan, the young son of Judith Light on the 1980s sitcom, came out as gay in 1997, according to People. He said he decided to speak out now because it was "something that people are talking about right now really."
"I am speaking out because I want everyone who continues to 'tweak' and party to know that it is not worth the price," he said. "I want my community to wake up, stop being complacent, and start taking care of each other. We need to be the best we can — safe and healthy."
The 39-year-old said he began dabbling with crystal meth and sexual experimentation after ending a relationship.
"You suddenly lose all your inhibitions, you have no limits, you have no boundaries, you feel invincible," he admitted. "You feel incredibly heightened when it comes to your sexuality, and everything sounds and feels exciting to you."
"In that subculture of BDSM and bondage, it makes sense that a drug like that would go hand in hand with testing your limits and trying new things and getting dark and dirty and sexy and all of that. So unfortunately those lifestyles have gotten intertwined, and that's exactly how I got into it in the first place," he continued.
© 2022 Newsmax. All rights reserved.