LOS ANGELES, Sept. 27 (UPI) -- Former child star Danny Pintauro revealed on Saturday's edition of Oprah: Where Are They Now? that he has been HIV positive for 12 years.
"I wanted to tell you this a long time ago, but I wasn't ready. I'm ready now," Pintauro told Winfrey.
"I am HIV positive and have been for 12 years and it's just a big deal. It's not something that people are talking about now, really," he said. "When I first came out, which was before everybody -- Ellen [DeGeneres] and I came out the same year, Rosie [O'Donnell] came out four years after I did -- I missed the opportunity to be a beacon of light for gay kids who were going through what I was going through."
Pintauro told People magazine he is opening up about his own experiences of having casual sex while using crystal meth because he wants to raise awareness about how the practice is negatively affecting the gay community.
"I am speaking out because I want everyone who continues to 'tweak' and party to know that it is not worth the price," Pintauro told the magazine. "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."