Aaron Stark is 39 years old with 4 children, 2 cats and a dog. He also happens to be a  stay at home dad with a loving and caring wife. He is a comic book fan but Growing up in a very abusive and violent household almost lead to him being a school shooter. After over a decade of personal recovery, Aaron is now a happy man. He recently took to stage  (TEDxBoulder) to share his personal story of triumph over his dark past, and that has changed his life forever. 


  1. In your TEDx talk, you said “love the ones you feel deserve it the least because they need it the most” Could you go more in depth on this, and talk about it?

When you feel like you are the outcast, or the other, or the broken one it can make you much more likely to hurt yourself or others


When you are told you are worthless enough, you will believe it and then you will do all you can to make everyone else agree with you.

I think we are in danger of pushing the ones on the edge further out.

But if we can look at the ones we normally would have sustained for, it that we think don’t deserve love, and see them for the humans they are maybe we can start to heal this from the root of the problem.


  1. Why is it important, to first see other perspectives before we make our own judgments?


Because we all live individual lives, and we all operate using the information given to us. Someone else has a whole different set of information, and so should be learned from. The more you know the less you are afraid,  so if we learn all we can about the ones we shy away from maybe it will be easier to see the shared humanity.


  1. Why should we share our pain with others?


Because we are not alone. I really think these feelings of pain, isolation and worthlessness are near universal; they may well be the only truly bipartisan issue.

Sharing your pain shows others in that same position that they are not alone, that what they see as alien and broken is actually just human.

The truth really does set us free.


  1. If someone was in a similar position as you, what would you tell them?


There are no devils save for those who refuse to accept the devastation left in the wake of change.

The only thing that’s certain is that tomorrow will be different than today.

Keep moving. One foot in front of the other. Soon you will be walking, then you will be running. There is a light at the end if we keep going.


We are not alone.


Aaryan Gondal is a member of the Ascent Newspaper Club and a 10th grader in Ascend International School. He loves to write about sports (football in particular), technology and inspirational stories. Aaryan has been writing for the Ascent for over a year now. Through the Ascent, he informs, entertains and educates the community around him.