How to Write Sympathy Messages

When someone we know or love dies, it can be difficult to communicate how we are feeling. We might send a potted plant, funeral arrangement, or bouquet but writing the card is often difficult. For this reason, we’ve decided to collect a number of suggestions for you to write on a note or on the enclosure card that accompanies a gift.

In the moments when we aren’t there, sympathy cards will be. In fact, they are often displayed around a person’s home or office for weeks after a loss; they are a physical reminder of the love and support offered by each sender.

There are no perfect words to say to someone who is grieving. However, they can go a long way toward helping a grieving person feel loved and supported.

Tips For Writing a Sympathy Card

For those you don’t have an intimate relationship with, plan to keep your condolence concise and kind. You’ll also want to refrain from offering any advice. To purchase a sympathy plant or arrangement, please click here.

  • “With sympathy.”
  • “(Name) will be missed.”
  • “Sharing in your sorrow.”
  • “My sincerest condolences.”
  • “Celebrating their life with you.”
  • “We/I are/am so sorry for your loss.”
  • “Missing (name) right along with you.”
  • “I’ll be keeping you in my thoughts and prayers.”
  • “We/I feel so lucky that I got to know him/her.”
  • “I’ll be keeping you in my thoughts and prayers.”
  • “Sharing in your sadness as you remember (name).”
  • “If there is anything we can do please let us know.”
  • “Caring thoughts are with you as we share this sympathy.”
  • “Remembering your wonderful (relative) and wishing you comfort.”
  • “Celebrating the life of a good person and mourning their passing with you.”
  • “The loss of [name] is felt by many. We will remember them always and often.”
  • “It was truly a pleasure working with your (relative). He/she will be deeply missed.”

However, for close friends and family members, you can begin with a message of sympathy, then support, followed by a fond memory of the loved one. You can also keep your condolence concise and kind.

  • “With love and comfort.”
  • “Our hearts are with you.”
  • “May God give peace to your soul.”
  • “I’m going to miss her/him, too.”
  • “Praying for your family at this time.”
  • “I hope you feel surrounded by much love.”
  • “Our deepest sympathy for the loss of (name).”
  • “My heart goes out to you at this difficult time.”
  • “Sending healing prayers. I am so sorry for your loss.”
  • “With deepest sympathy as you remember (name).”
  • “Remembering your loved one with you in every moment.”
  • “We are missing (name) along with you. With heartfelt sympathy.”
  • “Our family is keeping your family in our thoughts and prayers.”
  • “Holding you close in my thoughts and hoping you are doing OK.”
  • “I am/we are deeply sorry to hear about the passing of your loved one.”
  • “Thinking of you all as you celebrate your (relative’s) remarkable life.”
  • “Keeping you in my warmest thoughts as you navigate this difficult time.”
  • “I cannot imagine the heartache you feel at this time. With deepest sympathy.”
  • “Wishing you peace, comfort, courage, and lots of love at this time of sorrow.”
  • “May you find peace, comfort, and all the love you need in the days to come.”
  • “Your (relative) touched so many lives. I’m grateful I had the chance to know her/him.”
  • “My heartfelt condolences. I pray that you are surrounded by God’s comforting love.”
  • “I/we pray for peace for your heart and comfort for your loss during this difficult time.”
  • “My heart is so saddened by this loss. May we never forget the joy they brought to us.”
  • “Thinking of your family. I’ll call to see when would be a good night to bring over a meal.”
  • “I’m not sure what to say in the face of such a difficult loss. We are sharing in your sadness.”
  • “We were surprised and saddened to hear about (name)’s passing. We’re going to miss him/her so much.”
  • “I’m deeply sorry your family is experiencing the pain of a loss like this. My heart goes out to each of you.”
  • “Wishing your family comfort and strength for the days and weeks ahead. We’ll be praying for all of you.”
  • “It’s going to take time to get through the shock of this loss. Just want you to know we’ll be here for you all the way.”
  • “My sincerest condolences to you at this time. You have my deepest sympathy and unwavering support.”
  • “I want you to know I’m here with a shoulder to cry on, an ear to listen, or anything else you need.”
  • “Even though there is joy in the homegoing, there is sorrow in your loss. Thinking of you at this time.”
  • “Thinking of you and wishing you moments of peace and comfort as you remember (relative/friend).”
  • “I was saddened to hear that your (relative) passed away. My thoughts are with you and your family.”
  • “(Name) impacted the world in so many beautiful ways. He/she will be remembered with love and joy.”
  • “I know this must be a very difficult and demanding time for you all. If there is anything we can do please let us know.”
  • “My heart goes out to you. Remember you are not alone- I am/we are always here to support you with love and a shoulder to cry on.”
  • “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.” Romans 15:13
  • “You’ve got so much on your mind and heart right now. Our family would be happy to take care of your yard/shovel your driveway for as long as you need.”
  • “Your family has served this country with courage and honor. You have so much to be proud of. I hope that can bring you some comfort in your heartache.”

Sympathy For Pets

If you are searching for a thoughtful gift to give to someone who has recently lost a pet, please click here. If you are ordering online, make sure to let us know under “Delivery Notes” what kind of pet it was so that the appropriate figurine can be added.

  • “(Pet name) was such a clever (animal). Thinking of you.”
  • “(Pet name) was one lucky (animal) to have you for her/his person.”
  • “Wishing you comfort and peace during this difficult time.”
  • “Sharing in your sorrow as (pet name) will be missed by so many.”
  • “(Pet name) was simply the best. May the joy she/he brought you live on.”
  • “(Pet name) lived a full life of love, joy, and playfulness. My most heartfelt sympathy for your loss.”
  • “(Pet name) was the luckiest (animal) in the world to have you love him/her. We will hold his/her memory close to our hearts.”
  • “Wishing you smiles as you remember happy times with your loyal companion and friend.”
  • “(Pet name) may be gone from your lap, but she’ll/he’ll stay in your heart forever.”
  • “I was so sorry to hear about (pet name). I sure am going to miss seeing him/her when I’m out walking.”
  • “Our fur babies hold such an important place in our lives and our hearts. Thinking of you as you remember (pet name).”

Following Up

Consider following up with your friend or loved one after some time has passed. You can send cards or a thoughtful bouquet to note an occasion like the recently deceased loved one’s birthday, wedding anniversary, holiday that was important to them, or just when you want to support the grieving person.

  • “It’s been a while, but I know the hurt doesn’t go away when the cards and casseroles do. I’m still here for you.”
  • “Just wanted to let you know we’re remembering your (relative) on his/her birthday and sending lots of caring thoughts your way.”
  • “I know Christmas won’t be the same without (name), but I hope it helps a little to know that you’re in my thoughts and prayers, especially through the holidays.”
  • “Hard to believe it’s been a year since we said goodbye to (name). I’m thinking of you.”
  • “I know it’s been a couple of months since you lost (name). Just know I haven’t forgotten. I’m still thinking about you and I’m here for whatever you need.”

Other Important Tips

Miscarriage is the kind of loss people will struggle to comprehend if they’ve never experienced it. Avoid saying anything like “You can always try again.” While those thoughts might come from a good place, they risk implying that the loss should be quickly grieved and recovered from.
The loss of a child is especially tough. When writing to someone who’s lost a child, just remember that the simple gesture of reaching out will mean just as much as anything you try to write.
Someone who has just lost their spouse or partner is both grieving and also facing a huge adjustment to their day-to-day life. Be sensitive and willing to sit in the grief of loss with your friend or loved one.

The topic of suicide is a sensitive one. It’s important not to share your opinions on suicide and instead be supportive of the person grieving. When writing a note, you can either avoid the topic altogether or simply use “died of suicide” or “died by suicide.” The term “committed suicide” is quite offensive and should be avoided.

For those who died in service to this country, consider thanking their loved one for their service in your note. Military families are in service together and the loss is deeply felt. We appreciate everyone who serves to protect our country. For some memorial flower suggestions to honor their sacrifice, please click here.