10/15/2017 08:37 EDT

Why Publicly Discussing My HIV-Positive Status Was the Best Decision I've Made

I often think about the responsibilities I have—the debt I owe, in a way—to those who came before me. I’ve been successful in my life, but I’m a gay man, living in 2016, in what will soon be Donald Trump’s America. I’m also HIV-positive.

There’s a responsibility in being HIV-positive, especially if you’re going to be out about it. I take that seriously. I’m still stigmatized for my status. It can be, and remains, a difficult road to hope. At the same time, because this is 2016 and I have access to medication, my life is as normal as anyone else’s.