Messages to Express Sympathy For a Loss

express-sympathy-cardHearing that a friend or family member has lost a relative is never easy, as it can be a delicate and sensitive time for the grieving. Emotionally you want to show your compassion and sensitivity because it's the right thing to do, but you'd also like to be mindful of what the person or families want and need at the time.

Often asking the grieving family or friend what you can do to help, or making yourself available in their time of need can make a difference in them getting through a difficult time.

The following tips represent some of the basic steps to offering comfort to someone who Is grieving:

  • Support Feelings: To show you care listen to the bereaved without interrupting them or offering advice. Often just sharing memories and talking about their loved one can help them feel better.
  • Give Affection: At the appropriate time it's okay to embrace your friend or family member, hold their hand, or simply put an arm around their shoulder.
  • Be Sensitive: Think of mourners around the holidays -- they tend to miss their loved ones even more around times of celebration with friends and family. Being sympathetic to their feelings of loss will help them be strong.

Also here's a quick video from Dr. Carol Kearns - After a Loss: How to express your sympathy

Expressing Condolence through a Card

If you are not able to be there for the grieving in their time of need its customary to send a card to the appropriate family member or friend at the right time. Expressing condolences in a note or card with a personal message from you can give a sense of shared sympathy and connection.

Yet offering condolences or expressing sympathy for someone's loss can be a difficult task, as you want to say the right things. For a full list of options check out obituarieshelp.org where they have an exstensive list of sample messages you can use. Here we have a few quick notes to use if you find it difficult to formulate the right thing to say on message.

  1. Today and always, may loving memories bring you strength, comfort & peace.
  2. This too shall pass. I want to be with you through it all!
  3. May the happy memories bring you comfort.
  4. Words cannot heal the pain of losing someone so dear. May God give you the strength to overcome this. Our thought and prayers are with you.
  5. Extending deep and heartfelt sympathy to you and your family.
  6. I'm there always for you. My deepest condolences.
  7. May you find peace in love in the memories you cherish. With heartfelt condolences.
  8. May the good memories of love shared, comfort you now and in the days ahead.
  9. Thinking of you & wishing you. Brighter day ahead!
  10. May God give you courage, strength and support. My thoughts and prayers are with you.
  11. May the love of those around you, help you through the days ahead.
  12. My deepest sympathies on your loss!
  13. I'll always be by your side in your time of need. My condolences to you and the family.
  14. You are in my payers and my sincere sympathy is always with you.
  15. Sorry to hear about your loss. Extending my deep and heartfelt sympathy.

If you're thinking of doing more than just sending a card, it's also appropriate to send a sympathy gift baskets and funeral bouquet to the family or to the funeral service with your card message as well. There are several different types of funeral arrangement and bouquets you can send. Here a few things to consider when you send a sympathy arrangement.

  • Check with the family first to see if it's ok to send certain arrangements to the service. Lilies are popular plants to send, but some people may be allergic to them.
  • Call the funeral service home and get the correct time and place to where you can have you sympathy arrangements delivered.
  • Find out if it's okay to send the bereaved family members a sympathy gift basket to their home.

Expressing your condolences to a friend or family member is the right thing to do and will provide comfort to someone in their time of need whether you choose to do it with a single card or by sending a sympathy arrangement.