You Only Leave Once

Saying thank you after your bereavement period

When you are grieving, it’s easy to forget about the people around you lending their support. That’s why it’s a good idea to say thank you after the funeral.

First, know that it is never too late to send a thank you note. Everyone understands that you are grieving and someone you loved has passed away. This looks different for everyone and could mean weeks, months, or even a year before you feel up to sending thank yous.

Once you do get around to send out thank you notes, there are a couple of different options. You can purchase cards that have a pre-typed message inside them, or you can get cards that are blank inside and write your own message. When getting cards with messages already in them, still add a small message from yourself. If you do decide to write your own message it doesn’t need to be a long one. A few short sentences thanking them for whatever they did for you will suffice, as long as it’s personalized and sincere.

Since it could be a while before you get around to it, making a list of who helped you will make addressing the notes easier. Include their first and last name with their phone number, which will come in handy if it was someone that you didn’t know very well or that worked with your loved one. If someone comes to visit you, write their name down on the list. Include people who showed exceptional kindness or sympathy. This could be a family member who stayed with you after the funeral to make sure the house was taken care of or a friend who brought over food, so you didn’t have to cook for a couple of days.

Other people you may want to send thank you notes to include the pallbearers, a musician if you had one perform at the funeral, anyone who helped with a monetary donation, whoever brought flowers, and the Clergy. If you feel like it’s too much to keep track off, try asking a close friend or relative to help you.

A few examples of what to write are as follows:

“Thank you for attending _______’s funeral. Your presence and the love you extended to our family during this time is greatly appreciated.”

“Thank you for being with us during this difficult time.”

“We greatly appreciate the support you have given us during this grieving period.”

When signing your cards, you can sign them with multiple signatures or from the whole family to show everyone’s gratitude.

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