I wrote a post about Dysfunctional families. Someone was kind enough to read it, and leave a comment. He mentioned Tolstoy.
It is true that Tolstoy had Depression, argued with his wife, and almost disapeared from family life in later years.
But, I feel that we tend to romanticise dysfunction when it happens to great writers.
Caravaggio,..the drama in his life adds to the romance of his story. We love to hear how he slipped through the streets in Italy, getting into fights, falling in love.
We interpret his paintings as we refer to his life.
We also romanticise the life of Van Gogh. We tell the story of how he lived with poverty, loneliness, became mentally ill,..and how he saw the World, perhaps exaggerated, intensified by his Epilepsy.
If someone is a great writer, or ballerina, then the dysfunction becomes part of the story.
Personally, I do not believe that dysfunction is ever good or pleasant, even if you are a genius. I feel sure that all these people could have achieved great art, and did not need to suffer so much.
But my own family do not write symphonies, novels, or paint. We are just dysfunctional.