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Bittersweet Tea Helps Mothers Cope

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By Jessica Gould

Every year, mothers who have lost their children to violence come together for an afternoon of sweets and solace.

For Nardyne Jefferies, just filling out a form can be too much.

"You know, do you have any children. Yes or no. And I sat there for a long time because I didn’t know how to answer the question," says Jefferies.

Jefferies' daughter Brishell Jones was killed in the drive-by shootings in Southeast, D.C. last spring. And sometimes, she says, it’s hard to find people who can really understand her pain.

"You hear that a lot. 'Oh I understand.' And you know that they really don’t," she says.

This weekend, Jefferies attended a summertime tea for mothers who have lost their children to violence. Over cookies and crumpets, they shared strategies for survival. Jefferies says she never wanted to be part of this club, but she’s grateful for the support.

"When you come to an event like this and it’s put on in such a nice, tasteful manner you do feel a little solace in knowing there are people who truly understand," she says.

The Willard Hotel hosts the annual event, which was founded by a group called Forgiving Mothers.

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