Expressing sympathy during this new normal

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Experiencing the loss of a loved one is always difficult. In today’s environment of “social distancing”, we are even more challenged in finding ways to reach out and connect to those who need comfort at a time of loss.

While many of us may be adapting to new everyday routines, the etiquette of expressing sympathy by and large has not changed. Here are a few helpful tips from 1-800-Flowers.com:

1. Even if you don’t know the person well, saying, “I’m sorry for your loss” is always appropriate and meaningful. It’s acknowledging what has happened in an honest and direct way. And lets the person know they have permission to experience any uncomfortable emotions. Read more tips on how to comfort someone who is grieving here.

2. If they haven’t said anything on Facebook, neither should you. But if they have posted about it, it is appropriate to comment. Read more about the do’s and don’ts on expressing condolences on social media here.

3. Due to recent regulations on large gatherings in many states due to COVID-19, many funeral services are being postponed or livestreamed over the internet making it an extraordinarily stressful time for the immediate family. If you aren’t able to express your condolences in person at this time, deliveries of a gourmet food basket, houseplant or sympathy flowers to their home are appropriate ways to let them know you are thinking of them. Find these sympathy gifts and more for home delivery here.

4. And remember to support those who have experienced the loss of a loved one in recent months, and may be feeling a bit more aware right now; be it due to social distancing or an upcoming important date or anniversary. Rebecca Soffer, co-founder of Modern Loss provides some additional thoughts here. You can also explore complimentary sentiment ecards for Thinking of you and Sympathy to let them know you are thinking about them.

For additional resources on sympathy and remembrance, click here. If you are in need of expressing your condolences and not sure what to send, 1-800-Flowers.com sympathy specialists can help by calling 1-866-538-2259.

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