Writing a Christmas card can be particularly difficult, especially if that person is grieving. Whether it’s their first Christmas without their loved one, or their seventh, it’s always difficult knowing what to say.

Filling in a blank card or adding an extra message alongside a prefilled one takes time. Read some tips below for things you could say if you just don’t know what to say.

  1. Picking your card – be thoughtful about the card design. Would the person appreciate one that is a family eating dinner together, or would a festive animal be better? Or even a snowy scene?
  2. Take time to consider what you are going to write first, and the same goes for picking a blank card or one with a pre-drafted message. If you would like to write a lot then a blank card may be better. Whatever you decide, drafting your words on a separate piece of paper lets you re-read your message and redraft it if you need to.
  3. Make sure you name the person who has died and acknowledge the death, this makes your words feel more personal.
  4. Try to avoid phrases like “they’re in a better place” or “they’re no longer suffering”, it may not be relevant for those affected.
  5. Remind them that they are not alone and you are there for them, that could include being a phone call away, arranging a day to pop over, or something else. It’s important that they feel supported.
  6. It’s also ok to say you don’t know what to say. Just a simple, “you’re in my thoughts” can often be enough.

Our Royal Trinity Hospice shops sell packs of sustainable Christmas cards in all of our shops. They are 100% recyclable, with 14 designs to choose from. 

If Christmas is a difficult time for you then find our bereavement support here

10 tips for coping with grief at Christmas