New York Psychiatrists Carlene MacMillan and Owen Muir Sued over Patient Suicide

August 28, 2019

Husband-and-wife Brooklyn shrinks inappropriately discussed their personal lives with a deeply troubled patient while ignoring her suicidal threats, a lawsuit claims.

But while the patient, Mona Haddad, 26, eventually hanged herself, one of her own friends defended the doctors, telling The Post that they did everything they could to help her.

The lawsuit pits Haddad’s mother, Esther Haddad, against podcasting psychiatrist Owen Muir and his fellow-doctor wife, Carlene MacMillan, who together run the Brooklyn Minds practice, the papers show.

The couple began treating Mona Haddad about a year before her September 2016 death, billing the family up to $20,000 a month, according to the Brooklyn Supreme Court suit filed earlier this month.

“Following Mona’s tragic death, Plaintiff . . . uncovered a macabre tapestry of grotesque machinations that went far beyond routine negligence or derelict absentmindedness, or even gross negligence,” the court papers claim.

The pair and their practice “purposely aided, abetted, coerced, cajoled, taunted, triggered, and otherwise ultimately convinced and caused Mona to take her own life,” the suit charges. “In short, defendants did everything but slip the noose around Mona’s neck.’’

In some of the thousands of text messages the doctors exchanged with Haddad, Muir — host of the podcast “Self-Disclosure” — talked about being bi-polar and finding himself in a “terribly boring’’ relationship, the suit says.

MacMillan told Haddad “about her borderline personality disorder,” “an alleged affair that she had” and her fear of her husband’s purported rage, the papers state.

Haddad — whom the document described as “profoundly depressed” since her teenage years — issued cries for help, only to be rebuffed, the suit claims.

When Haddad texted her in June 2016, writing, “I have to die. Also I hate Dr. Muir,” MacMillan said she couldn’t talk because of her throat before adding, “Will see you tomorrow,” the suit charges.

Haddad had been suicidal for years and in and out of a Boston psychiatric hospital, said her mother and the friend.

On Sept. 23, 2016, Haddad told MacMillan that she tried to hang herself, according to the document. MacMillan told her to go to the ER, but Haddad refused, the papers state.

Muir called Haddad’s father the next day, saying Haddad was “agitated” and advising him to take her to the hospital — although not telling him or his wife about their daughter’s suicide attempt, the suit says.

Her dad took her to NYU Langone Medical Center, the suit says. She was released the next day and hanged herself two hours later, according to the suit.

NYU Langone and several of its doctors also are named in the suit, which claims it was clear that Haddad was at “significant risk to kill herself” yet released.

Muir and MacMillan did not respond to requests for comment. Their lawyer, Robert Devine, called the suit baseless, saying that Haddad had long been a deeply troubled woman and that to blame her death on the psychiatrists was “unfair.”

“We will be filing a motion to dismiss,” he said.

Haddad’s friend, who asked not to be identified, said the last time Haddad was in Muir’s office, “she took a wire, tried to wrap it around her throat and kill herself.”

“I can tell you that Dr. Muir did everything he could to help her,’’ the pal said.

She said the suit is about “a grieving mother who is trying to find someone to blame for something you can’t blame on anyone.”

NYU Langone did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Source: “Family of suicide victim sues psychiatrists for her death,”  New York Post, August 25, 2019. URL:

Brian Lee
2022-07-05 16:33:05
This action was dismissed by the Court. It is currently on appeal.

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