Five Alternatives to "Sorry for Your Loss"

Five Alternatives to “Sorry for Your Loss”

October 9, 2020

There is nothing wrong with saying “sorry for your loss” when someone you love in Phillipsburg, NJ is grieving. It is hard to know the right things to say in loss, and if this is your standby, that is more than okay. But when you are responding to a long Facebook thread offering condolences or you wish for something more personal, you do not have to look far for an alternative to “sorry for your loss.” Here are five other things to say instead:

  • Make it personal: One easy way to adjust “sorry for your loss” is to add the deceased’s name. For example, if the deceased was named Mary, you would say, “I’m sorry to learn of Mary’s passing.” This offers a strong personal touch that shows you will remember them. After all, if someone is bereaved, they loved this person, and they do not want them left forgotten.
  • Add a title: This is yet another way to make your condolences personal. Rather than, “I’m sorry to learn of Mary’s passing,” this is further refined to something like, “My heart breaks for you at the loss of your grandmother, Mary.” People are many things to their loved ones, whether it’s their spouse, partner, uncle, aunt or sister. Recognizing that brings another level of relief and comfort.
  • Acknowledge their legacy: If the deceased meant something specific to you, that legacy will bring comfort to their family. Rather than just, “I’m sorry for your loss,” taking this into another realm of the personal with something like, “Your grandmother Mary lived a long life! I will never forget her stories about riding and racing horses.” This also adds the extra element of recognizing the bond in addition to the extraordinary life they lead.
  • Offer sympathy and support: This is especially important for people who lost a loved one very suddenly. Even if you’ve been through a similar experience, you can never know exactly how they feel. So, “I understand your hurt” may not be the best idea. Try instead something like, “Nothing I say will make the hurt go away. Just know I’m here for you at this devastating time.” This offers empathy while also giving the bereaved room for their own feelings.
  • Practice sensitivity: There are some difficult situations where you have no idea what to say and worry about being insensitive. One of these is suicide. Loved ones often fear stigma, but also fear abandonment from friends and family. You can offer condolences by saying something like, “Your brother was in so much pain that he saw no other way for it to end. I am sorry and am here for you, always.” This is both compassionate and supportive.

Phillipsburg Memorial Company is a premier supplier of memorial stones and markers in Phillipsburg, NJ. We are here for you when you are on the receiving end of things to say in loss and are prepared to give our best efforts to honor your loved one. Contact us today if you need a cemetery marker.

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