J. Patrick Gannon


J. Patrick Gannon, Ph.D. is a clinical and performance psychologist in private practice in San Francisco and San Rafael, California. He has worked with children and adults who have been abused over the last thirty five years. He lectures widely on a range of mental health issues. Dr. Gannon graduated with honors from Boston College with a B.A. in psychology and philosophy and received an M.A. and Ph.D. from the California School of Professional Psychology in Berkeley. In 1993, he became the Clinical Director of the Norma J. Morris Center for Healing From Child Abuse in San Francisco, CA where he was one of the founders of the ASCA Self-Help program. Soul Survivors became the theoretical basis for the ASCA program which drew on the 21 steps of recovery outlined in the book.

Dr. Gannon is married and lives in San Rafael, California with his wife Dr. Michelle Gannon, two sons and a dog and cat. In addition to his work with adult survivors, he has presented a secular, skill-based workshop called Marriage Prep 101 with his wife for the last fourteen years in San Francisco (MarriagePrep101.com) and is a specialist in performance anxiety and peak performance training with musicians, singers, athletes, actors, dancers, job applicants and public speakers. For more information about his performance work, visit www.PeakPerformance101.com. Email him at drpatrickgannon@gmail.com.”

Smashwords Interview

Why did you write Soul Survivors?
I became intensely interested in working with adult survivors of child abuse when I took my first job out of graduate school. The job was to start an outreach mental health program for children and their families in the Tenderloin neighborhood of San Francisco. This neighborhood, located next to the Civic Center in SF, was a crime-ridden, drug infested, multi-cultural urban oasis that was off the beaten path for the common San Francisco tourist. But the Tenderloin was also home to some 3000 families, many of whom were new immigrants from Southeast Asia following the end of the Vietnam War. It quickly became apparent that child abuse and neglect were major problems facing children and families and our job was to be the primary intervention and treatment program to protect children and help their parents change the abusive parenting behaviors that they learned from their parents. Early on, we decided to intervene on two levels: help the children by treating their emotional problems and help the parents discover the origins of their abusive behavior. The link between the parents' childhood and their abusive parenting behavior was a relatively new idea back in the latter 1970s. As we worked with more and more families, this linkage became more clear and we developed new approaches to treatment that became the genesis for Soul Survivors. Helping the parents be better parents by helping them face what happened to them as children became our primary child abuse prevention strategy. Prevention is the holy grail of community mental health programs and was always my primary reason for becoming a psychologist. Our program, The Tender Lion Family Program became a state-wide model of what a community mental health outreach program could be. And it still exists today.
Are you a survivor of childhood abuse?
No, I was not physically or sexually abused as a child. Nor was I neglected. Was I emotionally abused? At times, yes. My family reflected the type of dysfunction that comes with having addicted parents. My father developed an alcohol problem and my mother had a prescription pill problem tied to on-going medical issues. Being in an Irish-Catholic family, there was not a lot of understanding about addictions or personal growth. It was a sin to feel pride. Feelings were not always respected or considered. Compliance and obedience were the guiding principles of family life. If you had different thoughts from your parents, you were wrong. And if you were wrong, you were "being bad". It was that simple. As result, my siblings and I suffered from low self-esteem and anxiety. Shame may have been the abiding destructive affect that all of us kids experienced. At times, it felt that you could never be good enough. When I started working with child and adult survivors, I identified with many of their feelings although never to the extent that I felt traumatized by what I experienced in childhood. In a sense, I experienced just enough of the emotional abuse to want to do something about it. That is why I became a psychologist and ultimately, why I wrote Soul Survivors.
Read more of this interview.

Where to find J. Patrick Gannon online

Where to buy in print


Soul Survivors: A New Beginning For Adults Abused As Children
Price: $5.99 USD. Words: 197,020. Language: English. Published: December 25, 2013. Categories: Nonfiction » Self-improvement » Abuse, Nonfiction » Psychology » Child Abuse
Soul Survivors: A New Beginning for Adults Abused As Children is the republishing of a classic self-help manual for adult survivors and described as a "model of clarity and organization" by PW. This eBook edition serves as the "Big Book" for an international self-help group called ASCA (Adult Survivors of Child Abuse) and includes all meeting materials allowing anyone to start an ASCA meeting.

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