I ran across an interesting article on How Stuff Works today. It talks about a possible link between intelligence and mental illness. It's an interesting concept to think about . Are the smartest of us also mentally ill?
The example the author used was the great inventor Nikola Tesla. His inventions were precursors to many things we use today such as A/C electricity, electrical generators, and more.
However, he also had many behaviors that could be described as something a mentally ill person would do. The things in his life needed to be divisible by three. He used 18 napkins at every meal. He would only stay in a hotel room with a number divisible by 3. He would probably be considered obsessive-compulsive if he lived today.
The article also says:
"Researchers conducting one such study of Swedish teenagers discovered straight-A students were four times more likely to develop bipolar disorder, a mental illness marked by alternating moods of elation and depression, illustrating a correlation between intelligence and higher instances of mental illness. As the study subjects' emotional state transitioned from low to high, there was evidence of increased activity in the frontal lobe of the brain. This area is known for regulating creativity."
Many smart and creative people suffered or do suffer from mental illness. Carrie Fisher and Kurt Cobain were bipolar.
This where the term "tortured genius" comes from. I'm not saying everyone who is smart is mentally ill. I'm just looking at people who are considered "smart" and also happen to have mental health issues.