“I will not give anyone the right to frighten me and influence my life,” the 29-year-old singer wrote. “Coming out is better than being outed by a third party.”
Conchita revealed that she had been HIV positive for “many years,” and had never intended to go public with diagnosis.After years of receiving treatment, her viral load is nearly undetectable, which means her risk of passing on the virus to another person is negligible.
“I hope to give others courage and to take another step against the stigmatization of people who, through their own behavior and that of others, have become infected with HIV,” she added.
In 2014, Conchita made headlines and history as the first drag queen winner of Eurovision Song Contest. Out of drag, Conchita is known as Thomas Neuwirth, who goes by male pronouns. Since the competition, Neuwirth has appeared on fashion show runways and has grown a large following.
Read more at The New York Times.