My Response to an Internet Troll Who Thinks My Reality TV Show Is Dumb

I've spent the past four years helping people tell the truth. It has always seemed strange to me that people are more comfortable opening up and revealing deep secrets on national television instead of privately to their friends or family. And​ I frequently wonder: Why am I a good option for people to turn to for understanding as opposed to their family or friends? As you can see from the tweet exchange below, some people wonder the same thing.

In a society with serious pressure to conform, look good, and be popular, I'm doing everything I can to help people express themselves. I know "reality TV" is not often considered to be a very meaningful or important forum, but I feel like people mistake my motives. My goal is to make it OK for people to speak the truth—the truth about who they are, who they love, who they fear, etc. If we can make national television a safe space for people to express themselves without the fear of being judged and with the promise of understanding and acceptance, then imagine what we can do in more private settings?

Perhaps now, more than ever, we need to remember that success in life isn't measured by diplomas, homes owned, or money made. Success can't be tracked and should never be compared. It's a result of feeling good about oneself. It's about being happy with what you have, not disappointed that you don't have more.​ As Louis C.K. once famously said, "The only time you look in your neighbor's bowl is to make sure that they have enough. You don't look in your neighbor's bowl to see if you have as much as them.”

Louis CK on his neighbor's bowl

Some of the best moments I've experienced have been helping others, explaining their stories when not everyone is able to find a voice. Take Arista, I met her filming "Catfish" and learned just what it means to learn and promote acceptance in the LGBT community. 

Accepting who you are and understanding that you have every reason to be seen, appreciated, and loved is something I've been working on promoting for the past four years. You don't have to pretend to be someone you're not, or keep who you really are hidden. Be yourself. Express yourself. Love yourself. Trust that there are others who will too. This is my response that exceeds 140 characters to my Twitter troll above.

Season 5 of MTV's Catfish premieres at 10/9c and Nev's new show, Suspect, also premieres on MTV at 11/10c on Wednesday, February 24.