Inside South Florida


Comfort Cubs: A Hug in the Form of a Weighted Teddy Bear

Posted at 12:00 AM, Jun 05, 2024

On Inside South Florida, we had the pleasure of speaking with mental health ambassador Alicia O’Neill, who shared her heartfelt story and introduced us to the comforting world of Comfort Cubs.

In 2019, Alicia faced the unimaginable pain of losing her newborn son, Jordan. She received a Comfort Cub in the hospital, which she named after her son. This weighted teddy bear provided Alicia with much-needed solace during a time of immense grief. "I don't think I would have been able to walk out of the hospital if it weren't for this little teddy bear," she shared.

The Comfort Cub was founded by Marcella Johnson, who also experienced the loss of a child 25 years ago. Marcella created the Comfort Cub to support those dealing with grief, loss, and trauma.

The Comfort Cub is not just a teddy bear; it has an evidence-based background for mental health support. Alicia, a survivor of a school shooting, highlighted the therapeutic benefits of the cub. The weighted bear provides deep pressure therapy, which releases serotonin, dopamine, and oxytocin—chemicals that help regulate emotions. "It's creating an emotional regulation by just holding and squeezing this weight," Alicia explained.

The Comfort Cub has significantly impacted Alicia's life by connecting her with others who are also navigating grief and trauma. "It's really connected me with humanity and knowing that we're all really here for each other," she said.

Comfort Cubs is a nonprofit organization supported entirely by donations. They offer these comforting bears to those in need, providing a source of solace and emotional support.

For more information about Comfort Cubs, or to request a bear, visit

Inside South Florida

10:49 AM, Jul 26, 2019

Inside South Florida is an original, local lifestyle show focused on providing our audience with informative, useful and entertaining content. It features a variety of community organizations, businesses and happenings in South Florida. It is a marketing-friendly program dedicated to offering businesses the opportunity to showcase their company/products, reach potential customers and gain results.

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