It can be difficult to figure out how to acknowledge the loss. It may appear even more difficult to navigate the grief experienced by friends, coworkers, and loved ones. What do you say or do on the anniversary of someone’s death when you’re not sure what to say or do? In our digital and connected world, the rules of etiquette are many and varied.
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The tone of your communication should be consistent throughout all channels of contact. Make an effort to convey a sense of reverence and optimism in your message. How you greet them should be dictated by their level of comfort with their situation. And who they were unable to save. Relationships are difficult to navigate both in the now and in the past. Trying to soothe someone might be difficult when you don’t want to offend them in any way.
Another important thing to remember is to keep the attention on the individual who is grieving and their loved one. This is not the forum for discussing your own experience with loss. If you want to talk about your experience in further depth later, you can always do so. When making comments that do not take place in person, this is very crucial.
Post-loss advice: If you are the executor of the estate of a departed loved one, taking care of their unfinished business can be stressful if you do not have a system in place to organise your efforts. We have a post-loss checklist that will assist you in making certain that the affairs of your loved one’s family, estate, and other issues are properly handled.
What You Should Say on the Anniversary of a Death
It is entirely up to you how you express yourself – and if that sounds intimidating, we are here to assist you! Nonetheless, the overall tone of your message should be “I’m thinking of you, I care about you, and I’m here to help.” Isn’t it simple? In this section, we’ll take you through a variety of different scenarios.
On social media
On the anniversaries of someone’s death, there are a variety of methods to commemorate the occasion. You may see the initial death notification, as well as retro photographs, photos, and lengthy passages. If you intend to send a lengthy message, make sure to properly read the post before you start writing.
When it’s acceptable, use humour: If the post is intended to be amusing, feel free to keep your message light. Something along the lines of, “They were always so amusing! “I miss their sense of humour!” A humorous memory you have of the person can also be shared.
Leave a compliment: It’s impossible to go wrong by leaving a complimentary comment about a deceased person. As an example, “They were such a beautiful person to meet.” “They produced the greatest cookies,” says the author. “They were the ones who supplied the best counsel.”
If you don’t feel confident or comfortable leaving a textual comment, you can always use the emoji “to convey your message.
Keep things straightforward: Any of the following comments would be fantastic: “I’m thinking of you!” says the author. “I’m saying a prayer for you.” “Please know that I am here for you.”
Whether it’s on the phone or in-person
On the anniversary of a death, it may make more sense to call a friend or loved one than it does not. Perhaps you have a history of getting together to celebrate the anniversary. Alternatively, you may come face to face with someone unexpectedly. These types of events should be handled differently than those that occur on social media.
In-person, you may have a better time interpreting the scenario than over a phone call. However, it is that you are more concerned about saying the wrong thing. Allow the person who has lost a loved one to take the initiative. They may wish to chat about their loved ones for a long time, or they may simply appreciate your presence or company. For example, you may say something as basic as “you’ve been thinking about them” or “you care about them.”
A text message or email
When sending text messages or emails, think about what you’re saying carefully. Because text messages and emails do not carry intonation, the tone is particularly crucial. At the very least, when you’re face to face, you have the opportunity to further explain yourself. Alternatively, the individual may comprehend your intentions.
When attending a social function
If you’re attending a social gathering to commemorate an anniversary, it should be less difficult to figure out what to wear. Often, simply being present is sufficient. In this scenario, you should feel free to say simple things like, for example:
- “It’s wonderful to see you again.”
- “I’m so relieved that we’re all here together.”
- “I miss them, yet I have the impression that they are here with us.”
What if you’re at a social gathering for another event and you’re aware that it’s the anniversary of a death? What do you do? Take care not to step on anything. The individual may want to keep their mourning private. Getting out and about could indicate that they wish to be present and joyous rather than depressed. If the person brings up their loss, you may say something like:
- “It’s been a difficult day.” “However, I am delighted to meet you.”
- “They would like to see you having a good time.”
- “I’m happy you’ve come to see me. “How are you getting along today?”
If someone does not bring up a death anniversary that you are aware of, what do you do in that situation? Is it considered insensitive if you don’t bring it up yourself? This is not always the case.
It is sufficient to enquire about someone’s well-being and to listen attentively. If you are with a large group, take them aside and speak with them quietly. They’ll most likely appreciate your thoughtfulness on their behalf.