How to Show Heartfelt Sympathy to Someone That Has Lost a ParentOn March 8, 2017 by abah guru
Losing a parent is difficult. It does not really matter how old you are when you lose your mom or dad. Obviously a young child who loses a parent will have their life turned upside down. The older you are the more you expect it to happen, but it does not lessen the pain. Death is not easy and death of a parent is often one of the hardest times in a person's life.
When a friend loses a parent we are quick to send condolences. If you are a close friend you may even offer to entertain children, screen calls, or cook meals. During these difficult times you want to be careful how you talk. It's not considered good etiquette to tell them you know how they feel, unless you also have lost a parent. If you have experience the heartache of losing a parent feel free to talk about it. Just be sure you try to not make this all about your pain.
It is difficult to find the right words when trying to give comfort and express your sadness for them. Find words of encouragement rather than comments that could offend. Since you are a close friend share some memories you may have of their parent. Find some funny memories to share, be there to laugh and cry.
If you are just a acquaintance or coworker and someone has lost a parent your approach may be different. You should feel free to send them a card expressing your condolences. Keep it short and genuine. Offer your support if they should need it. If you are able, find out if someone is heading up meals and offer to take one to them. Sending flowers, or a gift basket would also be appropriate and welcomed during this time. Be sure to attend the funeral or memorial service even if you did not know them well. Just knowing they have a large support system behind them can help them through that difficult day.
Finally, if the child is young who just lost their mom or dad, be especially sensitive to their needs. They may want to talk, they may want to watch a movie or play a game. Children deal with death in many ways. Usually it varies from hour to hour. Let the child take the lead in how they want to deal with it. Be there to talk, grieve, or entertain. It is one of the more difficult tasks, helping children deal with the loss of their parent, but one none the less that is most needed and should not be neglected.