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Cards for supporting people experiencing loss & grief.

Feeling at a loss for words or confused about how to show up for a friend or family member who is grieving?  See our helpful tips below for suggestions on how to write an encouragement card.

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How to write a
sympathy message . . .

A well-crafted sympathy card can be a tremendous comfort and even a  lifeline to those who are navigating the complex territory of loss & grief.  And like most of us, you might be at a loss for words when figuring out how to send a sympathy message to someone who is grieving.

So here are some thoughts to keep in mind & three simple steps you can follow when you're creating your messages of support:

  • Be willing to name the loss.  When we're grieving, what most supports us is to know that we are not alone in our experience.  Witnessing or being able to acknowledge the impact of their loss goes a long way in offering solidarity & support!

Examples of what you might say:   

"I recognize the tremendous enormity of this loss."

"Holding you in my heart during this heartbreaking time."

"My heart is reaching towards yours during this intense and painful time."

#1

  • Offer your support either through an expression of love & empathy, or as a tangible resource of help.  Make sure that what you offer is something you will actually be able to show up with and be clear about the specifics of what you are offering!  When people are grieving, they often cannot tell you what they need, but they can receive what you offer.

Examples of what you might say:

"I  am holding you in my (heart/thoughts/arms) during this time." "Sending you love & solidarity and so much tenderness from afar."

"I 'm here to support you in any way I can." 

" I  love you, and I am bringing you a meal on Saturday.  Would you prefer quiche or soup?"

"I'm with you in this.  I will sit with you in the depth of this process through all of its twists & turns." 

#2

  • Validate whatever the person's experience might look like.  Grieving has many layers to it, and it does not follow a set timeline or trajectory.  It is also not a neat and tidy process.  We all grieve differently, and there is no right or wrong way to grieve.

Examples of what you might say:

"I  am here with you in it, no matter how long it takes or what that journey looks like."

"I hope you can give yourself space to feel whatever you need to during this time & the grace to be in this process for however long is needed."

"You get to decide what will best support you right now.  And whatever you need, I am here & will honor it."

#3

These three elements will go a long way in offering meaningful support to those you love during one of the most stressful experiences in life.  And that simple, heartfelt recognition of the depth of grief in the face of loss can often be a lifeline for folks who are struggling.

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