Beyond Bedlam's Door: True Tales From The Couch & Courtroom
Thunder Lake Press, 2017 (2017)
Reviewed by Jessica Maguire
, Mark Rubinstein, MD, wrote a truly fascinating non-fiction book about mental illnesses and the havoc that can be created in the lives of its sufferers. This award-winning novelist is back with
Beyond Bedlam's Door
, a collection of twenty-one case studies that explore the human psyche.
his collection of true stories explores the questions that arise from many complex cases. Questions such as why a psychiatrist would not only plot a mass murder, but would get a patient to help him, are explored. Post traumatic stress disorder is examined when someone who cheated death in the World Trade Center during the 9/11 terrorist attacks lost all zest for life, while others in his situation were elated to be alive. And why would a once home-bound woman, thriving under treatment, suddenly revert back to her old ways, yet even worse?
find these stories to be quite fascinating. The fascination lies in that Rubinstein is focusing on unscripted life as it is played out by average people. He does so in a way that is considerate of the people whose stories he tells, their privacy and dignity always respected.
particular story I like is that of Sidney, the author's dog. When Sidney accompanies his person to the office, a peculiar thing happens. Uncomfortable patients who share very little start opening up and sharing their fears, wishes, and feelings. Sidney quickly becomes a canine co-therapist of sorts. Sidney is a fine example of the comfort and ease an animal can impart to humans.
n a final note, there is no need to feel you have to be a psychologist to understand or be interested in this book! The reader will find a helpful glossary to better understand the pertinent phrases and concepts of these case studies. This volume is a smart read for anyone interested in exploring the human psyche.
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