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Serving Dorset for over 100 years


When someone you know is suffering from the loss of a loved one, reaching out to offer condolences is a natural reaction. Sending your condolences and offering support to a bereaved family is usually very comforting for them in such a tragic time. It is completely normal to feel unsure about the best way to express your sympathy. As a family funeral directors, we often get asked about the best way to support bereaved families. Many people worry about coming across as insensitive, but often messages of support are of great comfort to those who have just lost someone. Our bereavement support groups in Dorset are always available to those who need support in dealing with the loss of a loved one. Our local funeral directors have compiled some advice to help anyone who is supporting a bereaved family. 

Choosing a sympathy card

If you would like to reach out to a bereaved family to offer your condolences, a sympathy card is a great way to do so. Try and find a blank card which will allow you to write your own message inside. Handwritten messages show that you have taken the time to write your own words of support, which is very comforting for someone dealing with grief.  

When writing a message in the card, it is okay to share fond memories and moments you spent together. It is nice for a bereaved family to know how much their loved one meant to people. Sometimes this kind of sentiment only comes out after a person has passed away so don’t be afraid to say how much they meant to you. The main message you want to get across in your card is sympathy for their loss. Try not to offer advice on how to cope with their grief but do let them know that you are someone they can speak to moving forward.  

How to support a bereaved family

When supporting a bereaved family, it is important that you do everything on their terms. Everyone deals with the loss of a loved one differently, so you must be patient when offering support. Our local funeral directors provide bereavement support groups in Dorset, so we have lots of experience helping families dealing with grief.  

  • Making contact – After hearing about someone’s loss the first stage is making contact. You may send a sympathy card or a text message. Phone calls or a face-to-face meeting are great ways to offer your condolences but bear in mind that some people may not feel ready to talk or might just be too busy. 
  • Let them do the talking – When you do speak to someone who has recently suffered the loss of a loved one, it is important that you let them do the talking. Try not to interrupt them or change the subject. They will have a lot of emotions to process so try and give them an outlet to express themselves. It is okay not to talk as well, sometimes just sitting quietly with someone is all you need to do. 
  • Helping them day-to-day – Something which is always appreciated is helping someone with their day-to-day tasks. Offer to cook dinner or do the shopping. Let them know you would like to help and ask if there is anything they need. 
  • Spend time with them – After the loss of a loved one, it is common for people to feel lonely. Suggest an activity to do with them like going for a walk or watching a movie.  

Bereavement support groups

A great way of supporting bereaved families is by suggesting a local bereavement group. These bereavement support groups in Dorset will have advice and support to help families suffering from the loss of a loved one. If they are unsure, you can suggest going with them for the first couple of meetings. Local bereavement groups like the ones we offer at Douch Family Funeral Directors are beneficial for several reasons 

For more information about our local bereavement groups, get in touch with us today. To speak to someone from one of our local funeral directors, give us a call on 01202 367307.