Author: Mark Rubinstein, MD

Beyond Bedlam’s Door

Publisher: Thunder Lake Press


Doctor Rebinstein, author of Beyond Bedlam’s Door, has penned several other books with glowing reviews. (2017, inside front cover) He contributes to Huffington Post and Psychology Today. (p. 275) He graduated from NYU with a degree in Business Administration and then embarked on a career with the US Army as a field medic where he worked with the 82nd Airborne. After his tour of duty he decided to become a physician and psychiatrist. Mark was the attending psychiatrist at King’s County Hospital and also had his own private practice in New York and Connecticut. He is a forensic psychiatrist and has testified in many cases, trials, arbitrations, inquests and hearings as an expert witness. To learn more about Doctor Rubinstein you can log on to his website.

Beyond Bedlam’s Door offers several true stories about mental illness. It is written narrative style and provides keen insight into each patient’s background and current circumstances. While many of these stories may seem unbelievable to those of us with rational minds this clearly depicts a series of astonishing and honest tales about the psychiatrist running amuck.

The opening story, A Place at the Table, depicts a man who has been treated for years for anxiety with the same psychiatrist. The psychiatrist begins to cross the patient doctor border when he suggests that perhaps they go into a business venture together. However, it is the business that begs further explanation. In the end the patient happens to sue his psychiatrist for malpractice as he (the psychiatrist) was planning to kill someone and asked his patient to help him locate a gun and aid him in this messy and illegal process. The patient becomes flustered and afraid. He gets the police involved and they make him wear a wire to learn about what has transpired and how or when to arrest this kooky physician who has obviously gone mad himself. Doctor Rubinstein says “Kevin (the patient) was flattered when the psychiatrist wanted him to enter into a business situation…It was as if the parent became the child…In a very real sense Kevin was powerless to resist Doctor Thomas’ entreaties for help.” (2017, p.13) As I read this chapter I was literally scratching my head thinking that this is certainly a case of the insane treating those in his care

In a later chapter titled Sex Therapy, Rubinstein speaks about being at a dinner party where he was interacting with some peers who were talking about their various patients when one doctor said that he was considering having sex with one of his patients because she was forlorn about her husband not wanting to have anything to do with her sexually. He went on to describe some of the scenarios for his friends. He said she had been making all kinds of innuendos and invitations. She was also quite attractive. This behavior is highly frowned upon and the peers where aghast. Doctor Rubinstein says “In virtually any form of psychotherapy, the relationship between a therapist and patient can be a crucial factor in a patient’s progress, or lack thereof.” (2017, p.104)

There is a glossary of terms at the end of the book that are helpful if you, the reader, does not understand some of what Doctor Rubinstein speaks about. (2017, pgs.255 – 272)

I cannot say that I enjoyed the read because it made me pensive and angry in part. However, it was a learning curve and made me consider the players and the angles that were blurred by the physician patient relationships contained in this book. This is truly one of the cases where the truth is harder to digest than fiction.