After his admission to the institution in Saint-Rémy, Vincent often mentions death in his letters. His ambition and faith in his own health gradually also starts to wane. Vincent is petrified that the attacks he suffered will return.
Conversely, his brother is bursting with ambition. Theo was married, had recently become a father and was planning on starting his own art dealership. Vincent was still completely financially dependent on Theo, and perhaps felt like a millstone around his brother’s neck. Or perhaps he was worried that Theo would not be able to continue to send him sufficient funding in the future.
We’ll probably never know the exact reason for sure.