Sympathy card for someone you don't get on with

(50 Posts)
laluna Wed 20-Feb-13 13:20:05

Don't know what to do.....

School mum who I was friendly with but no longer get on with ( no falling out as such - just drifted far apart, daughters fell out, differences in parenting etc) has lost her Dad from cancer. We don't speak now through not having the chance to, rather than anything else. I met the man a few times and new the wife quite well.

Do I send a sympathy card? Seems silly that I am dithering - I genuinely feel sad for their loss but dont feel there is much of a relationship to base this on now and dong want them to feel I am being a busy body.

5Foot5 Wed 20-Feb-13 13:26:54

Oh I think you should send one. They won't think that you are a busybody at all. They probably have too many other things to think of right now and, if anything, will be touched that people care enough to bother

I know many bereaved people who have been comforted by the amount of cards that they get, they like to knowthat they are being though about.

I got an unexpected Mass card from someone, who i wasn't on great terms with when my DH was dying and thinking about it, it was nice to think that someone had given our situation and grief a moments thought.

I would send a card toboth Wife and Daughter, or a combined family card.

SkinnybitchWannabe Wed 20-Feb-13 13:30:45

I think you should send a card.

MrsKeithRichards Wed 20-Feb-13 13:31:41

I would.

willesden Wed 20-Feb-13 13:32:45

I wouldn't send a card. Why would you? She isn't a friend. It is a bit mawkish.

yes you should send the card - from your family to theirs

no brainer

BumBiscuits Wed 20-Feb-13 13:33:24

A friend of my mum's lost her daughter. I can't stand the friend and don't speak to her but was buddies with the daughter who passed away about 20 years ago.

I sent a card to the family that just said "I am truly sorry to hear about xxx".

I got a message via my mum thanking me for the card, though I wouldn't have bothered if it hadn't been acknowledged.

SoleSource Wed 20-Feb-13 13:33:46


kinkyfuckery Wed 20-Feb-13 13:35:02

Yes, I would.

Thumbwitch Wed 20-Feb-13 13:35:06

I'd do it.
If my ex of many years (Very acrimonious break up, 3m prior to wedding he fecked off with someone else) could send my Dad a sympathy card when my Mum died, having not spoken a word to him for 12 years, then you can.

TroublesomeEx Wed 20-Feb-13 13:39:11

It's up to you.

I got 2 sympathy cards when my dad died - one from my brother and one from a distant relative of my stbxh.

It didn't even occur to me to think about sympathy cards. I didn't expect any and didn't derive any comfort from the one's I got.

So my point is, send one if you want to, no one's going to think "what on earth did laluna send us a card for?!" but no one is going to think "I always knew that laluna was a cow, she didn't even send us a card".

In this case, do what you feel is appropriate.

Yes send the card.
You are thinking of them and you should let them know that.

atthewelles Wed 20-Feb-13 13:43:40

I think it would be a nice thing to do. People don't really send sympathy cards as much as they used to and I think that's a pity. I really appreciated the text messages of sympathy I got when my dad died last year but the cards meant more because someone had gone to the trouble of getting it and writing in it and posting it and I felt touched by that.

zukiecat Wed 20-Feb-13 13:45:17

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

pictish Wed 20-Feb-13 13:45:21

Do you think she'd do the same for you?
Exactly. I wouldn't bother.

zukiecat Wed 20-Feb-13 13:52:23

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

deleted203 Wed 20-Feb-13 13:54:48

I wouldn't personally. I would only send a sympathy card to a close friend, probably. Not to someone I had no real contact with anymore.

Up to you, though.

atthewelles Wed 20-Feb-13 14:06:24

Often, its the unexpected cards or messages from people you haven't seen or spoken to in years, that mean so much to you at a difficult and very sad time.

pictish Wed 20-Feb-13 14:09:52


Apologies if I seem harsh. I guess it would depend on who it was, and what the cicumstances were. If it were someone I don't have contact with, I probably wouldn't bother. I'm not a cardy person though it must be said.

I would be far more likely to offer my condolences in person when the opportunity arose I think. I'm not horrible...I'm just not into cards.

zukiecat Wed 20-Feb-13 14:14:32

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

pictish Wed 20-Feb-13 14:18:08

No it's ok...I did sound a bit hard there.

Dorris83 Wed 20-Feb-13 14:18:58

I agree with everyone who is encouraging you to send one. It is a lovely and thoughtful thing to do and I'm sure it will be appreciated.

Yakshemash Wed 20-Feb-13 14:20:23

Please send the card.

atthewelles is spot on. A short personal message from an unexpected quarter can help hugely when you're struggling with bereavement.

Pancakeflipper Wed 20-Feb-13 14:21:13

I would send one.

ThreeWheelsGood Wed 20-Feb-13 14:21:14

Yes, send one. To be honest in the grief she might not notice it among the other cards, but it'd be better than not sending it.

stickingattwo Wed 20-Feb-13 14:21:46

send a card, perhaps one day someone will do the same for you and you'll understand.

pictish Wed 20-Feb-13 14:22:27

You've all made me soften.
Send it. x

GregBishopsBottomBitch Wed 20-Feb-13 14:22:29

I would, when my sister lost her little boy at 11 months, neighbours that she didnt even speak too sent her cards and flowers.

I think its nice to know that even tho you dont really talk to people, they have given you thought and sympathy, its nice knowing that someone cares.

zukiecat Wed 20-Feb-13 14:25:50

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Saltire Wed 20-Feb-13 14:27:37

I thin you should send one. I know when my dad died when I was 16, one of the girls from school who I didn't get on with sent me one with a note in it syaing how sorry she was etc. it meant a lot

FeckOffCup Wed 20-Feb-13 15:45:48

Yes I would send it, I regret not sending one a few years ago to someone I wasn't that close to at university who lost his father suddenly (a flatmate's boyfriend so not really a friend of mine). I bought the card but never gave it to him and still feel a bit bad, I saw how hard it was for him to not have his dad there at their wedding several years later and felt guilty about not doing that small thing at the time.

HecateWhoopass Wed 20-Feb-13 15:47:25

" I genuinely feel sad for their loss"

That's what a sympathy card is for.

I would send it.

LtEveDallas Wed 20-Feb-13 15:52:41

I was only 3 months post (very acrimonious) divorce when my brother was killed. I was very shocked when my ExH sent a card and pretty much immediately fell apart. It was hard to see his handwriting on something so personal.

However later on, when we were starting to heal, it was good to look at it and realise that no matter our problems, he had loved my brother too.

I would send it.

AmberLeaf Wed 20-Feb-13 15:54:26

You were good friends once and no great falling out, so yes do it.

You feel for her, let her know.

JessieMcJessie Wed 20-Feb-13 16:02:30

You feel sympathy, so send the card. From experience that I wish I had never had, sympathy cards mean a lot. Slightly different situation, but I have never forgiven my ex boyfriend for not sending a card to my Mum when my stepfather died (at only 62 and suddenly) - boyfriend had got on well with my family, spent a lot of time with them both for 5 years and we had remained friendly, if not in close contact.

bowerbird Wed 20-Feb-13 16:03:22

Always go with your most generous, kindest instincts. Send a card.

laluna Wed 20-Feb-13 17:34:20

Thanks - all done. Kept the message very brief but sent sincere sympathies with thoughts for them all.

FellatioNels0n Wed 20-Feb-13 17:39:43

Honestly? I wouldn't if I were you, because it's she's someone I'm no longer in regular touch with, and we don't seem to have much in common anyway. If it were me I'd be feeling a bit sad for her, but that would be it.

But that's me. You have thought that in spite of all that it would be a lovely thing to do, and you are absolutely right. It would. There should be more people like you in the world, and fewer like me. Send the card.

bowerbird Wed 20-Feb-13 18:47:53

Fellatio. Yes, there should be more people like OP. But I think your honesty and grace quite lovely too.

DreamingOfTheMaldives Wed 20-Feb-13 18:50:37

I would send one.

When my Dad died, receiving sympathy cards from people really made me feel cared about - it was nice to know that people were thinking of Dad and us, if only for a minute. I have kept all the cards. Not sure if others think that's strange but throwing them away didn't feel right.

Cailinsalach Wed 20-Feb-13 21:03:18

I worked with the same people in the same office for 8 years. When they had deaths, I sent Mass cards, flowers and attended one funeral to represent the firm.

When they had births and weddings I sent cards and bought gifts.

When my Mum died not one of those heartless bitches sent a card and most didn't even offer spoken condolences.

You did the right and gracious thing.

slimshady Wed 20-Feb-13 21:06:00

Yes of course you should.

You are acknowledging someone's dead father.

HollyBerryBush Wed 20-Feb-13 21:22:23


Simply because if you cant phone or call round in person, you really dont care enough for the bereaved. Cards are just a marketting dream come true for peopel who really cannot be bothered.

pictish Wed 20-Feb-13 21:26:33

What fellatio said. Every word.

Dereksmalls Wed 20-Feb-13 21:27:39

Send one, I was touched by the ones I received when my DF died. Probably more so when not from close friends (unfairly) as those ones were completely unexpected

eyestightshut Wed 20-Feb-13 21:29:44

My dad died last month. It has meant so much to us all that on hearing of his death people took the time to go out and buy a card, put a little message in it and pop it in the post.
I'd send one.

Thumbwitch Thu 21-Feb-13 02:14:31

Dreaming - I still have the cards that I was sent when Mum died too. Like you, I don't think it's right to throw them out - they are part of her memorial, if you like.

I think you were right to send a card, OP. Something that I think is quite common in bereavement is a feeling that the world should just stop, that everything's changed, that something momentous has happened, even though you know perfectly well that loads of people are going about their business totally unaware of your loss (which is of course perfectly right and understandable that they should do so) but there's something additionally comforting in getting an acknowledgement of what has happened from someone who wasn't particularly close. When my dad died, I remember being very touched that the checkout staff at the local supermarket sent my mum a card because Dad had been friendly with a couple of them.

MercedesKing Thu 21-Feb-13 07:16:32

The card can help a lot, please send it. smile

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