Charlie Sheen Reveals He's HIV Positive After Years of Blackmail

"It's a hard three letters to absorb."
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"It's a hard three letters to absorb."
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Charlie Sheen came clean Tuesday morning about a rumor that's been following him for awhile: TheTwo & A Half Men actor is indeed HIV positive — and he has known for four years.

Sheen appeared on NBC's Today and gave a candid interview to Matt Lauer, admitting that he's been blackmailed a number of people in his inner circle — including what sounds like at least one prostitute — after being upfront about his condition.

Asked how many people had blackmailed him, Sheen couldn't give an exact number. "I told enough that I trusted....to be in the situation, the position, I'm in today." The actor said he's paid his extortionists a total figure that reaches the millions.

"What people forget is that's money they are taking from my children. They think it's just me. But I've got five kids and a grandkid," he said. 

Sheen told Lauer he went to the emergency room four years ago after experiencing days of cluster headaches, drenching night sweats, and "insane migraines."

"I thought I had a brain tumor," Sheen said. "I thought it was over."

Lauer asked Sheen if the people blackmailing him were doing so because they claimed to have contracted the virus from him, or if it was a shakedown. Sheen insisted it was mostly the latter.

Asked if he was still paying anyone, Sheen paused and said, "Not after today I'm not."

Photos by Jeffrey Mayer/WireImage