During life’s most difficult moments, the support of friends and loved ones can make all the difference — especially when it comes to loss.
“It’s very lonely when you lose someone because your feelings and experience are unique,” Dr. Robin Grant-Hall, a clinical psychologist, told TODAY. “People who care need to let the person know that you are there for them.”
One of the easiest ways to show your support is with a condolence message or gift.
When sending condolences, Grant-Hall warns that you should avoid projecting your own feelings or views onto the recipient with statements like “They’re in a better place" or “Things will get better.”
Instead, let them know that you're there to support them, are sad for their loss and recognize what a hard time it is. Grant-Hall recommends continuing to offer comfort and kind words in the weeks and months after a loss. “Grief lasts for a long time,” she added.
In case the right words aren’t coming easy, we’ve pulled together a list that might help or, at the very least, provide the inspiration you need when filling out a sympathy card.
Short condolence messages for the loss of any loved one
- The candle may go out, but the memory of its light remains.
- We’ve shared so much through the years and I’m here now to share the weight of your loss. Whatever you need, I’m standing by.
- Our/my heartfelt condolences for your loss.
- Our/my thoughts are with you during this sad time.
- Words of sympathy feel inadequate in expressing grief and sorrow for a loss so great. Sending a warm embrace and all my love during this sad time.
- Wishing you peace and comfort in these difficult days.
- I’m here to lend an ear or shoulder should you need one.
- Even when we can’t see them, the stars still shine.
- I’m so sad for your loss. Thinking of you.
- Sharing in your sorrow and here for you in the days ahead.
- Thinking of you and sending my love during this difficult time.
- My heart goes out to you and your family. My deepest condolences.
- Sending thoughts of comfort and all my love.
- If you were here, I’d give you a hug. I’m so sorry for your loss.
- With love and remembrance, we share in your sorrow.
- There are no words for such a sad time. My condolences.
- Caring thoughts are with you during this difficult time.
Condolence messages for the loss of a friend or coworker
- Those we love never truly leave us. Sending our love and sympathy to you.
- Sending you strength and support during this hard time.
- I wanted to reach out and let you know that I’m here for anything you need. I’m so sorry for your loss.
- In this sorrowful time, sending thoughts of comfort and hope that you find strength to get through the difficult days ahead. We’re here for you.
- I share in your grief and send you all my love in this time of sadness.
- Our deepest sympathy to you and your family. Hoping that the support of loved ones brings you comfort during this sad time.
- A hug from me to you to let you know that today and every day, you are in my heart and thoughts. I’m so sorry for your loss.
- Gone, but never far from our hearts. Deepest sympathy for your loss.
- You need only look in your heart to find what is lost. Sending our condolences to you and your family.
- If there wasn’t so much love, it wouldn’t be this hard to say goodbye. Our thoughts are with you.
Condolence messages for the loss of a mother or father
- Your mom was the brightest light in a sky full of stars. Sending love and support during this hard time.
- There’s nothing to say to ease the loss of a mother. We are here for you and send our deepest sympathy to you and your family.
- In loving memory of your mom. Thinking of you and hoping you find peace and strength in the days ahead.
- Mothers never truly leave us. You need only look in your heart and she’ll be there. So sad for your loss.
- Wishing you comfort and remembering the kind spirit that was your mom. Our condolences for your loss.
- May you find peace and comfort in your father’s memory.
- Though I didn’t know your father, I know you and that means he must have amazing. I’m so sad for your loss.
- There isn’t anyone I know who didn’t look up to your dad. He was one of the kindest, most genuine people I ever met. My thoughts are with you and your family during this difficult time.
- May you always feel his hand on your shoulder and hear his laugh echo in your heart. Our heartfelt condolences for the loss of your father.
- It’s hard to say goodbye and even harder when it’s to someone like your dad. He was one-of-a-kind and will be missed by everyone.
Condolence messages for the loss of a husband or wife
- In loving memory of your husband, a person whose kindness and generous spirit touched the lives of everyone who knew him. He will be so missed.
- When something like this happens, it leaves everyone figuring out how to pick up the pieces. There are no words, only love and support during this sorrowful time. I am here for you.
- Our deepest condolences on the loss of your beloved husband. He leaves behind an eternal flame in our hearts. Our thoughts are with you.
- Even when we cannot see the sun, it is still there, shining down from the sky and spreading its warmth so that we may one day bask in it again. Sending my sincerest condolences.
- There are no words for the loss of your wife, a person who was cherished by everyone who knew her. Our thoughts and love are with you in this time of sorrow.
- She shined so bright that the memory of her light will never dim. Wishing you strength and comfort during these difficult days.
- Everyone who knew her considered themselves lucky, myself included. I’m here to offer an ear or shoulder should you need one.
- In loving memory of your wife: She was loved deeply by everyone who knew her. Hoping the support of friends and family bring you comfort at this difficult time.
Condolence messages for the loss of a family member
- Although I never met your sister, I feel like I knew her through you. I’m so sad for your loss and wish you strength in the days ahead.
- Your sister was sincerely one of my favorite people and I know she was yours, too. Hoping the love of friends and family see you through this sad time.
- In loving memory of your brother, someone who brought a smile to every occasion. He’ll be so missed. Thinking of you.
- Brothers are special. Yours was exceptional. Wishing you peace and comfort at this sad time.
- Thinking of your cousin and how much you loved him/her. There’s nothing to say for a loss so great. My condolences at this sad time.
- We are shocked and saddened to learn of your loss. Please know that we’re thinking of you and are here for anything you may need.
- Remembering your grandmother/grandfather with love at this sad time. Sending condolences to you and your family.
- My condolences on the loss of your uncle. I know how special he was to you and hope you find peace during this sad time.
- Your aunt was completely outrageous — in the best way possible. It’s hard to imagine a world without her in it. She leaves behind so many wonderful memories and I hope they bring you comfort during these difficult days.
- With a loss so great, there are simply no words to ease the pain. If there were, I would use them now. Please know that I’m here.