Proper Ways to Sign Sympathy Greeting Cards & Condolence Cards

When someone you know suffers the loss of a loved one sending sympathy greeting cards is a wonderful way to reach out. It can be difficult to know what to say to someone, but a condolence card can express your sentiments in a way that you may not be able to put into words. A message of concern and a personal signature can make your card a gentle reminder that the bereaved is surrounded by people who share in their grief, which can mean the world to someone who is suffering.

Most sympathy greeting cards already come with an appropriate pre-printed sympathy message inside; just be sure that the condolence message on the card you select is not only what you wish to convey but also keeps your recipient in mind. For example, if the person you are sending condolences to isn't particularly religious, you might want to stay away from cards that mention prayers or God and choose something more generic, or vice versa.

It is perfectly acceptable to simply sign a card that includes a pre-printed sentiment and send it off. However, if you want to make your sympathy cards a bit more personal, you can hand-write another message in addition to the pre-printed condolence message. Phrases such as “With deepest sympathy at this time of sorrow” or “My thoughts are with you during this difficult time” are almost always appropriate whether it is for a friend, family member, or business associate. If you knew the deceased very well, feel free to also share how you knew the person or a particular memory or thought.

Remember to sign both your first name and last name inside your sympathy greeting cards. However close you may be to the person you are offering condolences to there may be someone else with the same first name. You don't want the person in bereavement to have to figure out who you are. It is also a good idea to include your full return address on the envelope in case the recipient wants to send a thank you note. The easier you can make this difficult time for someone, the better.

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