The classroom falls silent as the teacher explains that victims of violence go through specific psychological stages in the aftermath of an attack. Most of these students, though, don’t need a lecture to understand the lesson. It’s part of their everyday lives, the Associated Press reports. Many of the teens came to the U.S. seeking refuge from Mexico’s drug war, which made violence a constant companion since childhood.
“I’ve been through all three stages: impact, recoil, reorganization of my life,” 17-year-old Alan Garcia told the class before breaking down in tears. “My mom goes in and out of recoil stage.”