02/01/2013 01:07 am ET

Ronaiah Tuiasosopo Dr. Phil Interview: Man At Center Of Manti Te'o Hoax Says He Is Recovering From Homosexuality (VIDEO)

Ronaiah Tuiasosopo, the man behind the now-famous hoax on Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o, now says he's "recovering" from homosexuality.

In an an interview with Dr. Phil McGraw for the "Dr. Phil Show," the first part of which aired Thursday, Tuiasosopo compared being gay to drug addiction:

“You’ve heard of recovering drug addicts? It takes a lot of courage to stand and say that to recover from homosexuality and this type of thing. Not just that, but coming back to your real life, as hard of a task it is, I’m going to do all that I can to live right.’’

According to Today, Tuiasosopo, 22, has admitted to carrying on a long-distance online relationship with Te'o while pretending to be a woman named Lennay Kekua. Te'o said he fell in love with Kekua despite having never met her in person. Tuiasosopo then killed off the character last September, The Associated Press reported.