Addressing “Compulsive Comfort-Seeking”
At Family First, adolescent substance use is viewed both neurobiologically as well as developmentally. Understanding the impact of substances on brain and nervous system regulation in the context of very complex factors gives a lot of information about what is driving the compulsive nature of their use. “Compulsive comfort-seeking,” as this dynamic is often referred, speaks to a problem or difficulty in a person’s ability to regulate their emotions and internal states. This difficulty has its origins in neurobiological patterns of shame, guilt, self-rejection, self-criticism, etc., that are impeding cognitive, emotional, and relational development. Until these patterns are addressed, the hope for long term recovery is very small.