If you read Vincent’s letters, he doesn’t come across as a man who had big secrets. He was generally open in his correspondence with Theo, although it sometimes took him a while to report his latest news. He waited to tell Theo about his relationship with prostitute Sien Hoornik in The Hague. She was pregnant and had a daughter when Vincent met her.
Vincent expressed any grievances he had, and vented how he felt about what was keeping him busy. In 1877, he wrote in a letter to Theo: ‘Thanks for coming here yesterday, and do let’s carry on having as few secrets as possible. We’re brothers, after all’.
It would’ve naturally been quite a scoop to discover that Van Gogh had fathered 16 children on the sly, but we’re yet to find any such skeletons in his cupboard.