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Sympathy Flowers

(14 Posts)
Kr1stina Tue 09-Oct-18 07:37:41

Today I’ll be sending sympathy flowers to a colleague who lost her son to suicide a few days ago and I’m not sure of the etiquette.

Do they have to be white flowers ? The white bouquets I’ve seen look as if they are for a wedding.

Andy advice on what to write on the card?

The funeral may not be for some time, due to the nature of the death, so we wanted to send something now. I’ve been in touch and know that she’s ok to receive flowers and cards.

Redglitter Tue 09-Oct-18 07:42:03

No they don't. Don't worry about What a sent once the florist knows it's an in sympathy order they'll do something appropriate.

If you can try and get one that either sits hand tied or is in a vase. When my Dad died my Mum got loads of flowers. It's nice to not have to try and find a vase or sort them.out

Member Tue 09-Oct-18 07:48:21

The flowers don’t have to be white, I would just keep the card simple “thinking of you”.

Member Tue 09-Oct-18 07:49:23

And yes to not having to faff about with vases/display

Kr1stina Tue 09-Oct-18 07:50:06

Thank you Redglitter. I was thinking of a hand tied bouquet so all she will have to do is pop them in a jar.

Kr1stina Tue 09-Oct-18 07:53:29

Member - I’ve looked at some “ in sympathy “ cards but the wording wasn’t suitable for the circumstances. Would a blank card be ok and i will just put what you said

Eg “ just to let you know that all your colleagues at X company are thinking of you and your family at this time “

CherryPavlova Tue 09-Oct-18 07:55:33

A blank card is fine. Coloured flowers are fine. What matters is that you care enough to send something and aren’t too embarrassed or awkward. A simple ‘thinking of you’ card would, I’m sure be very much appreciated.

Yogagirl123 Tue 09-Oct-18 07:58:05

A friend of mine in similar circumstances received lots of flowers, in all different colours, I wouldn’t say etiquette applies, at such an awful time. Knowing people care and are thinking about you does.

Sadly, your colleagues life will never be the same, they will need a lot of support over the coming years. Try to remember the important anniversaries.

My friend said, after the initial shock, people go back to their lives etc. And sadly that has seemed to be the case.

Life is never the same for a parent living without their child. It is horrendous to watch the destruction caused by an unexpected, tragic death. Something you never forget.

My lovely friends life has been destroyed, it has changed her so much. Even she herself says she is a totally different person now. So expect a lot of change.

So sorry that your colleague is going through this. flowers

yorkshireyummymummy Tue 09-Oct-18 07:59:53

No they don’t have to be white flowers.
If you are going into the florist ask what is best at this time of year and take into consider they will be in a house with central heating on .

As for what to write ........well how about “ thinking of you and sending much love. “
You could add “ if there is anything I can do to help you at this difficult time please , just ask”
It depends on how well you know her and how close you are- if you are friends you could write “ darling xxfriendxx - words are simply inadequate at a time like this. I just wanted to let you know you and xxsonsnamexx are constantly in my/our thoughts and I send you much love. Please, if you need ANYTHING - even if it’s a shoulder at 3am- I am here for you and just a text away.”

If you are close I would send a daily text message - lots of people don’t know what to say when somebody dies ( especially by suicide) but just simple messages show support ‘ thinking of you’ ‘ sending love today’ ‘please just let me know if I can help’ ‘I’m free today if you want some company ‘

Just write from the heart.

Kr1stina Tue 09-Oct-18 12:05:47

Thank you all so much for your kind words. Colleagues son has been very unwell for years and she often has to leave work or take time off without notice to deal with some crisis or other. We have all tried to support her and provide cover etc.

She is a very private person and rarely talks about her home life and family. Some people in the office didnt even know she has a son let alone his name because she only occasionally mentions her daughter and never her son.

I’d say she is more a respected colleague than a friend if that makes sense . None of us are close to her , she just gets on with her job and doesn’t socialise . Perhaps her caring responsibilities at home make her like this, I don’t know. I suspect she feels that mental illness is very shameful and maybe that makes her more isolated.

Because we are not close, it’s hard to know the things to say and do. If it’s a close friend or relative it’s easier to know how best to support them.

Hope that makes sense .

MissTeriName Tue 09-Oct-18 12:26:30

Please try to use an independent florist near her location.

I had the sad need to send two sets of sympathy flowers to the same person last year and used a local florist. The florist's website had a box to tick saying 'sympathy' or something so, in their words, they could advise the delivery person to hand them over in an appropriate manner. I thought this was incredibly thoughtful.

And yes to something in a vase or water bag. The recipient may not be up to finding a vase or jar.

Kr1stina Tue 09-Oct-18 13:21:07

Ok Ive followed your advice. Phoned local florists who have their own driver ( was described as an older gentleman ) who will be informed that it’s sympathy flowers.

Which is a point Id not thought of until a PP mentioned this. . Last time I received flowers at home, the driver greeted me with a cheery smile and asked if it was my birthday or wedding anniversary ( In fact it was my neighbours birthday !). I’m sure he meant well but probably not great for sympathy flowers .

Flowers will be a hand tied bouquet in box of water . They don’t do vases as apparently there’s no demand for a £10 vase when they can Be displayed in the boxl.

Florist was very keen that the flowers should be white and green only or pale pastel at a push. White or pastel somehow doesn’t seem right for a young man and I’ve askwd for autumn colours. Hope I’ve not made a faux pas.

Another colleague has been to the shops and found a suitable ‘in sympathy’ card that just says something like “ thinking of you at this difficult time “ and has no bad poetry.

MissTeriName Wed 10-Oct-18 19:50:05

They sound perfect and I'm sure they'll be gratefully received.

Kr1stina Wed 10-Oct-18 22:29:15

Thank you MissTeri, she texted me today to say the flowers were lovely.

I appreciate everyone’s good advice.

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