Big Brother winner Dick Donato shared a personal struggle on the Wednesday, Oct. 1 episode of VH1's Couples Therapy. The season eight Big Brother champ revealed to Dr. Jenn Berman that he has been HIV positive since 2011.
In a preview for the show, Donato, 51, tells Berman that his on-and-off-again girlfriend Stephanie Rogness-Fischer "does not want to talk about it, and if it's brought up with her, she'll probably leave." Donato, who was known on Big Brother as "Evel Dick," asked his girlfriend again if he could mention his diagnosis on the show, "and she was just really adamant not to bring it up blah blah blah," he continued.
"It's been a major ordeal in my life," Donato told Berman, without revealing his condition. Stumbling to piece together sentences, Donato said: "The reason I left Big Brother 13 — and after six days I left — every news station was stalking me for a long time. There were a million rumors [as to] why I left. I'm coming clean, I'm going public with this whole thing."
Donato said he learned of his HIV positive status when he returned to the series in 2011. "When you go on that show, they give you a billion tests," he said. "And it turned out I was HIV positive… It was just one of the most surreal times in my entire life."
Donato not only comes clean with Berman on the episode, but also shares his story with his castmates. Couples Therapy airs Wednesdays at 9 p.m. on VH1.
Watch the preview above.
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