Losing a loved one is one of the most difficult experiences in life.
In such a situation, just letting someone know you are thinking of them, through a thoughtful message or grief poem in a sympathy card, goes a long way in providing some comfort. When writing a sympathy card, it should be a goal to be as respectful and unintrusive as possible.
Put simply, there is no right thing to say, other than to show that you care.
What Not To Say
While you may not be able to find the perfect words to give them comfort, there are certain things you should refrain from saying:
- Phrases like “It’s all in God’s plan” or “Maybe it was for the best” are strange things to write in a sympathy card. Although well-intentioned, it is important to understand that someone mourning a deep, personal loss may not be ready to see the bright side yet. It’s best to give them the time they need to grieve.
- You should not tell a grieving person that they need to move on or get out more. Mourning is a process and everyone heals at their own pace. Join them in their comfort zone and let them you are there whenever they need you.
- “I know how you feel” or “The pain will go away with time” are rarely able to provide comfort soon after a devastating loss.
Following are several phrases that will let someone know you’re here for them. Be sure to start with one that feels right for the person you’re comforting.
General Sympathy Messages
- We’ll remember every wonderful moment we shared with her and will celebrate the incredible life she lived.
- I hope our love gets through so that you know you’re not alone right now. We’re thinking of you, always.
- Our thoughts and prayers are with you as you struggle through your loss. Please call right away if you need anything.
- Please know that I’ll be here for you, hoping every second that your heart is healing properly.
- My door is always open if you need a shoulder to lean on and a place to cry. Stay strong.
- Our family is waiting with open arms to help you through this loss, anytime you need us.
- Our hearts reach out to you and your family as you try to recover from this heavy loss.
- If you ever need someone to listen while you try to piece these feelings together, I’ll be there in a heartbeat.
- Cry as long as you need to and as hard as you need to right now. Everything else can wait.
- Please let me know if you’d like to talk through this. Rest as much as you need to and take good care of yourself.
Loss Of A Partner/Spouse
- He was an amazing person. I can’t imagine what you’re going through, but my thoughts are with you.
- She was lucky to have you in your life, and we hope you’ll find some solace in knowing how much she loved you.
- There was no one else quite like him and we know he was grateful to have met you.
- She was a special woman. You made her life happy, so we’d like to believe she’ll bring that happiness with her.
- He truly, deeply loved you. I don’t know how much it helps, but I am sure he’s still watching over you.
Loss Of A Parent
- When all your tears are dry, we hope you’ll be able to smile and laugh again, to show her that you’ll be okay.
- You took great care of him, even if you find it hard to hear right now. I’m sure he had no regrets.
- He was proud of you right up until the end. He raised an amazing daughter and will be missed for years to come.
- Your Mom was one of the nicest women I knew. I hope you’ll reach out to me if you need to talk about her.
- She’s probably still looking out for you, even now. She was lucky to have a son like you in her golden years.
Loss Of A Grandparent
- Your Grandpa lived a long, eventful life. I know it’s hard to let go, but I don’t think he had much to regret.
- Your Grandmother was fortunate to be so loved, by so many people. It’s a testament to everything she stood for.
- It’s hard to lose a grandparent, but I’m sure he’s already watching you from the next life, eager to see what you’ll do next.
- She’s going to want to hear all about your life when you meet her again, so we hope you’ll be able to smile again soon.
- Your Grandfather worked hard, played hard, and smiled often. Your family was everything he ever wanted.
For The Loss Of A Child
- His time may have been brief but he was happy every second of it, thanks to your love and acceptance.
- Her absence will never be easy to accept, but she was well loved. She had you to thank for that.
- We hope you know that you were an amazing parent. He was taken too soon, but he was born into a beautiful family.
- I know I can’t hope to heal your sadness right now, but please lean on me as much as you can, as long as you need to.
- If the pain ever gets to be too much, please come over and tell us every story about her that you can think of.
Religious Sympathy Messages
- Please accept our heartfelt condolences as we grieve with you. We pray God’s presence will watch over you.
- May the Lord watch over you as you recover from her passing. Let yourself heal as we wish for her peace.
- May God keep the rain off your back as you struggle to gather yourself from this loss.
- We know that you’re suffering, and we pray the Lord will watch over you with all the kindness you deserve.
- May God be gentle as he cradles your broken heart. As hard as it is to heal, we’ll be here with you if you need us.