When u suddenly realize u haven’t been shamelessly projecting headcanons onto characters just ‘cause they’re ur faves but because they genuinely canonically show multiple strong signs of having the mental illness ur rockin’ and u transcend to a new plane of self understanding
Because the story of Tony Stark is about making yourself into a better person. Tony holds the promise that no matter how bad your mistakes, no matter how many you hurt, that ultimately you can do good in the world and that you can become the person you want to be. Even if that’s a process, a long and difficult one.
Also Tony chooses to be a Super Hero and chooses those responsibilities. Steve Rogers, Thor, Peter Parker, Jennifer Walters, Luke Cage….they don’t have the option. They are transformed and ascended. They become champions. Tony chose to continue his path. He made himself anew into this and periodically reaffirms that choice. The act of choosing makes it more meaningful to my eyes.
Tony is also smart and not sorry. Other people in the Marvel universe are brilliant, but Tony celebrates it. That is not a common. Look at the prevalence of mad scientists, of brilliant yet evil criminals fighting hulking brutes. Smart guys don’t get to be the hero, they get to help the hero. Tony Stark is smarter then you, knows it, and isn’t going to apologize for your ability to not keep up.
Lastly, Tony’s in recovery. In a way that is very often forgotten, the comic book version of Tony is an alcoholic that is struggling to keep dry. Tony Stark deals with addiction, and in the world of Comics that’s not common. The Fraction/Larocca book is the only one I can think of that’s actively interested in relapse and recovery as themes. That just doesn’t happen in other Cape books and I think that’s something special.