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Sympathy for Loss of Family: What to Say When Someone Dies

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Etiquette & advice

Sympathy for Loss of Family: What to Say When Someone Dies

Having to say goodbye to a loved one who is suffering from a terminal illness is a difficult position to be in, especially when they have a long-term illness, like cancer or heart disease.

Having to address the hole that has been ripped into the hearts of those left grieving is also incredibly fraught. It is so important to take special care to say something meaningful at this time.

Saying generic things like “Sorry for your loss” and “S/He’s in a better place now” fail to give comfort and understanding to those hurting the most. Instead, it is best to say something that holds value.

Words that describe the person that has died while still addressing the pain of those trying to carry on in the present. Here are 30 different ways to give your condolences to the spouse, children, or parent who has lost a loved one due to terminal illness.

What to say when someone dies: for loss of a husband/wife


condolences for the spouse pink flowers
Image from Canva – under one-time use license


01“S/he would want you to live a life free of sadness, so smile for her/him.”


02“My condolences for the parting of such a sacred soulmate.”


03“In all my years, I had never seen a love as pure as what you two had, and you can continue to cherish.”


04“Your connection can never be broken, not even by the afterlife.”


05Remember that s/he will always be holding your hand when you need their comfort.”


06Though they may not be here beside you, they will never leave your side.”


condolences for the spouse peony
Image from Canva – under one-time use license


07“I give my sincere condolences for the hurt this loss has brought you.”


08“The pain you feel is unmeasurable, but s/he will still help you through it when you think of the happy memories you two shared.


09“This sadness is temporary, your memories as husband and wife are everlasting.”


10“There is no limitation to the life you two built together.”


condolences for the spouse white orange flowers
Image from Canva – under one-time use license


11“When you look into your child’s eyes, see that twinkle as your wife/husband smile.”


12“May the union you shared together on earth continue to stretch beyond space and time.”


13“S/he was irreplaceable, but s/he felt the exact same way about you.”


14“Your family tree will continue the unforgettable legacy of you and your wife/husband.”


15“If you ever need a shoulder to cry on, s/he will be there, and I’ll be waiting on standby.”


condolences for the spouse white flowers
Image from Canva – under one-time use license


16Many condolences, it is tragic to see such an unfair departure.”


17“I cannot completely understand the emotions you are overcome with now, but know I am here for you.”


18“I wish you and your family nothing but the best after this immense loss.”


19“Don’t forget to continue to love in the way they taught you, even though you will miss the love you shared because it was so unique and unmeasurable.”


20“Losing a life partner is nothing easy, but with time it will become just a little bit easier each day.”


What to say when someone dies: for loss of a father or mother


condolences for children flowers woman
Image from Canva – under one-time use license


21“Hold tight to all the life lessons s/he taught you.”


22“Remember that you will always be the light that shined brightly in her/his heart.”


23“Your mother/father would want me to give more than condolences. They would want us to smile in their memory.”


24“I know you think your mother/father was the light that kept the monsters at bay, and I know you are scared. But that light lives on in you in the love they gave you. I’m sorry for your hurt.”


25“If it hurts to think of the love you are missing from your (parent) and your chest feels empty from grief, put the memory of their love there to keep you warm during this time. “


condolences for children candles
Image from Canva – under one-time use license


26“You are the angelic gift that set your mother/father’s life ablaze, remember how much you meant to them when you feel alone.”


27“There will always be a voice that will guide you, and it will be your mother/father. So, listen to it knowing they will always care.”


28“It was no secret that your mother/father loved you more than anything in the world.”


29“Never feel alone because s/he will always be there to watch over you.”


condolences for children pink flowers
Image from Canva – under one-time use license


30“I will always be looking out for you, and together we can rehash the good memories that would make your (parent) laugh at our antics.”


31“This may not make complete sense now, but your (parent) had been suffering, even if it didn’t show. They would never want to put that on you, so it’s best they’ve moved to a place where they don’t suffer any more.”


32“Do not give up, child; your mother/father will be watching to make sure you make your dreams come true.”


33“It is okay to cry at times like these.”


What to say when someone dies: for loss of a child


condolences for parents angel flowers
Image from Canva – under one-time use license


34“There are no words to express how deeply it hurts to lose such a lovely child.”


35“S/he will live on in the comfort of your heart, and the pain will eventually be a distant memory.”


36“Let all the memories of the time you had comfort you in this time of sorrow.”


condolences for parents lotus
Image from Canva – under one-time use license


37“Hold tight to the love you shared, the laughter and lessons, just as they held close how amazing it was to have you as their parent.”


38“Please accept my condolences at the loss of an irreplaceable soul.”


39“Even though they were grown and independent, be proud of the humanitarian you raised for they were a gift to the whole world.”


40“In time, it will be worth remembering that their life lives on as long as you never forget them.”


41“The departed would want you to remember how you taught them to smile.”


42“Years of preparation could never prepare a parent for this type of torture.”


43“The pain you feel about losing your child will fade with time, and until then be gentle and know we are here for you.”
condolences for parents flower black and white
Image from Canva – under one-time use license


44“Condolences for the emotional turmoil you must be feeling after their passing.”


45“I cannot comprehend such sad times, but I will try to comfort you both as best I can.”


46“Parents are the most important ppl in a child’s life, so remember how important you were to her/him.”


47“Lean on me because holding in all the overwhelming emotions from something so tragic is too much for you to bear alone.”


48“Remember the wonderful, kind, generous human being you brought them up to be. You should be proud.”


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