When you sympathize, you care about how someone else feels during a time of trouble. If you sympathize with your brother, whose best friend is moving away, you understand why he's feeling sad.

When you sympathize, you care, so you might sympathize with the victims of an earthquake in a foreign country or a child who's waiting for her turn on a merry-go-round. Sympathize comes from the Greek sympathes, have a fellow feeling for. It's sometimes confused with empathize, which means putting yourself in someone else's shoes, rather than simply caring about them.

Definitions of sympathize
  1. verb
    to feel or express sympathy or compassion
    synonyms: commiserate, sympathise
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    express one's sympathetic grief, on the occasion of someone's death
    type of:
    compassionate, condole with, feel for, pity, sympathize with
    share the suffering of
  2. verb
    share the feelings of; understand the sentiments of
    synonyms: sympathise
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    type of:
    experience, feel
    undergo an emotional sensation or be in a particular state of mind
  3. verb
    be understanding of
Word Family
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