Tchaikovsky’s marital debacle may have forced him to face the full truth concerning his sexuality. He apparently never again considered matrimony as a camouflage or escape, nor considered himself capable of loving women in the same manner as men. He wrote to his brother Anatoly from Florence, Italy on February 19, 1878,
Thanks to the regularity of my life, to the sometimes tedious but always inviolable calm, and above all, thanks to time which heals all wounds, I have completely recovered from my insanity. There’s no doubt that for some months on end I was a bit insane, and only now, when I’m completely recovered, have I learned to relate objectively to everything which I did during my brief insanity. That man who in May took it into his head to marry Antonina Ivanova, who during June wrote a whole opera as though nothing had happened, who in July married, who in September fled from his wife, who in November railed at Rome and so on—that man wasn’t I, but another Pyotr Ilyich.
A few days later, in another letter to Anatoly, he added that there was „nothing more futile than wanting to be anything other than what I am by nature.”