Sympathy gifts are gifts given to people who are grieving after a loss and we often wonder what kind of gifts are appropriate for a loved one who is going through a season of grief as a result of the death of someone else.
The beauty of sympathy gifts is that they are an effective way of communicating that you understand what they are going through and you wish you could alleviate their pain or suffering. While many cultures and ethnic groups have the common practice of providing food and other perishable items, there are tons of other items that you can also give to express your condolences with the bereaved.
The important thing has to be that the gifts are thoughtful and heartfelt; that ensures that your recipients can find some comfort and solace in your care expressed through the gifts.
When to send a sympathy gift
It is often better to send the gifts as soon as you receive news about their loss and if that is not possible then send it at a later date. Some people would rather send sympathy gifts to mark a special occasion such as the birthday or wedding anniversary of the departed rather than during the mourning period. But regardless of the timing of the gift, it is the thought behind it that really matters. Here are some ideas for sympathy gift that you can send to your loved ones.
- Funeral or sympathy flowers: Flowers are a wonderful representation of the beauty of nature and can be given to those going through a loss, especially if the deceased was someone that appreciated flowers; they can serve as a fond reminder of the things they loved. There are many examples of flowers that make for good sympathy flowers and you can have them delivered to the home of the deceased.
- Lighting a virtual candle: From the beginning of time, lighting of candles has always been a way of celebrating the end of a life. You can take this tradition a step further by lighting a virtual memorial candle in honor of the departed. You can do this on a website that offers you the chance to light candles on their obituary pages and say words of dedication to the deceased. The beauty of virtual memorial candles is that they can be seen anywhere around the world by anybody at any time and can serve as an online memorial, giving the bereaved the opportunity to go back and reread those words written about their loved ones.
- Memorial trees: You can also decide to buy a small memorial tree in respect of the deceased. Memorial trees are trees planted in memory of someone else and they can last for several lifetimes, serving as a testament to the legacy of the deceased. Memorial trees could be planted in the home of the departed or donated to a place that was loved by them such as a park or a school.
- Gift baskets: Although these are quite common as condolence gifts, it still packs the power to communicate love, care, and compassion. Sympathy gifts baskets are often filled with edible items such as fruits, desserts, cookies, baked goods, chocolates, and dried nuts and they show the recipient that you are thinking of them. Many people find comfort in eating and you might be surprised at how soothing your loved ones may feel when they reach into your basket of a gift and pull out something to eat. For a more special touch, you can fill your baskets with a wide variety of edibles.
- Keepsakes: If you have a bit of artsy flair, you can make a beautiful collection of mementoes for the bereaved or arrange for it to be made. Jewelry, pictures, letters, favorite stories and poems of the deceased can be put together into a special scrapbook that the bereaved can always hold on to for memories of their loved ones. Whether it’s a dad, mom, grandparent or sibling that passed on, keepsakes are especially powerful and can be a very good reminder of the life of the deceased.
Whatever you decide on giving, don’t overthink it, just make sure you are sincere and thoughtful with your gifts and watch them offer up comfort to their recipients.