Writing A Condolence Message

Writing a condolence message can more times than not be an emotional and intimidating task. Sometimes what we want to say doesn’t come out properly, It can be challenging to find the right words to show support and comfort. South Wales Monuments understand that it helps when you know the common etiquette of a condolence message whilst also making it personal, mindful and thoughtful.

Writing a condolence message is a simple gesture that allows the person you’re sending it to, to know that they’re in your thoughts. We have gathered together a few tips which will help you write the perfect condolence message. 

Paper and Pen

Why Should You Write A Condolence Letter

It is very easy to pick up a card from a shop from the local shop, but writing a letter that is heartfelt and personal will be a lot more meaningful to the family of the deceased. It will also convey that the deceased, as well as the person who is mourning, is important to you. 

The fact that you took time to yo handwrite a letter or message will offer great comfort and support in comparison to a generic greeting card. Writing a letter also gives you a lot more room to express what you want to say. You could write about a memorable story you shared with the deceased that you would not be able to fit into a card from the shop. This is also the perfect opportunity to offer your time to the family whether this be a chance to talk about everything or if its chores around the home. 

If you do want to offer help, it’s probably best to write the specifics down. More times than not people will simply write, “If you need me just call.” This way of offering help can sometimes be seen as putting the burden of a call onto the person grieving. It’s probably best to write down in which ways you can help such as, “ I can do your shopping for next week.” or “I can make you dinner on Monday night.” Being more specific allows the message to be a lot more personal. 


There are some rules around the etiquette that are important to understand when you are writing your condolence letter. Some of them will seem obvious but it is still important to mention them. 

  1. Keep the message short and sweet, unless you’re telling a story about the deceased. 
  2. Sign with your full name so that no one can be confused as to who the message is from. 
  3. You need to be aware of the religious beliefs of the family.
  4. Do not mention anything that the deceased owed you, now is not the time. 
  5. Offer to help the family in any way you can, this could be with meals, chores or other.

The whole point of a condolence message is to show support and compassion to the family. 

What Shall I Say?

Be Honest and Personal 

If you were close to the deceased, you should allow your message to be personal and emotional. The family of the deceased will more than likely have received messages that are respectful and concise. It might make a nice difference to the family to have a meaningful memory to look back on to bring light to a dark experience.  

Tell A Story 

Some of the most personal messages come from stories. These stories are usually heartwarming as they represent a happy time in your life that you have spent with the deceased. These stories are usually touching and mean a lot to the family and friends of the departed. 

Be Creative 

If you are struggling to write a letter, you could get more creative with it and play to your strengths. You could create a slideshow of your favourite moments, create a playlist with al lof your favourite songs, or create a photo album. There are many ways to pay tribute to someone where you can avoid words altogether if you’re finding it hard to get the words down on paper. 

Breaking Down The Components

  • Acknowledge the loss 
  • Refer to the deceased by name
  • Note down the special qualities of the deceased
  • Include a memory 
  • Offer to help the family in a specific way
  • Offer your sympathies, a wish or a hope for the family. 

South Wales Monuments 

Headstone with rose

South Wales Monuments have years of experience creating and maintaining your loved one’s headstones and memorials.  They offer a compassionate and personalised service and will work alongside you and your family at this difficult time. South Wales Monuments have master craftsmen who can design and fit your unique memorials. If you would like any more information on our service please call us today on 02920 887188.