a bitter pill

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a bitter pill

An unwanted or unpleasant situation that someone is forced to accept. A shortening of the phrase, "a bitter pill to swallow." When Brett's parents stopped giving him money to pay his bills and told him to get a job, it was a bitter pill for him to swallow. Getting a poor performance review was a bitter pill, but it made me a better worker.
See also: bitter, pill

a bitter pill (to swallow)

an unpleasant situation that must be accepted Losing the championship was a bitter pill to swallow for a team that was used to winning every year. Having his fate in the hands of others is a bitter pill for this proud man.
See also: bitter, pill

a bitter pill (to swallow)

  also bitter medicine
a situation that is unpleasant but must be accepted Losing the championship to a younger player was a bitter pill to swallow. Cuts in salaries are a dose of bitter medicine that may help the company to survive.
See also: bitter, pill
References in periodicals archive ?
In the meantime, the bitter medicine provided by the Eurasian Economic Union to the people of Kyrgyzstan is relatively new; citizens have yet to see any great healing effects in their lives from this union.
Kayhan, a newspaper that serves as the voice of the supreme leader, declared, "The super-terrorist had a taste of its own bitter medicine.
We should not see it as bitter medicine, but as the first step in a massive motion of grace aiming toward the fulfillment of what this land is meant and called to be.
We have to drink this bitter medicine of military courts as we cannot provide protection to key witnesses and judges and under this air of fear judges cannot perform their duty.
It is estimated that the combined subsidy from subsidized LPG cylinder and Kerosene It is only a matter of time that the economy is given a bitter medicine, which will have a ripple effect on regions and markets.
Merkel, for her part, insists that if cash-strapped Greece wants more bailout loans, the biggest share of which is financed by Germany, it must accept the bitter medicine of spending cuts and reforms.
It's sickening those who work in the NHS are forced to swallow the bitter medicine of austerity when the financial mess was created by the very bankers the Coalition now champions.
Interesting enough, this time it was European countries, which have to swallow the bitter medicine that was usually prescribed for third world countries.
Prime minister Narendra Modi has already hinted at a tough budget saying recently that the nation must be ready for a dose of bitter medicine in order to revive the ailing economy.
Though the second part of my argument, which is bitter medicine for some to swallow, is that if they're born in the North of the country, even silver-plated ones are not as much use as they would be to those born in the South.
Governments in many the euro zone's peripheral countries with high debt burdens and slow growth, have prescribed the bitter medicine of steep budget cuts and higher taxes to shore up public finances, but that has made it harder to grow and unemployment has risen.
If Cyprus doesn't take the same bitter medicine as Greece and Ireland, the problems of one small island could affect us all.
Bitter medicine on holiday can be eased by a court ruling that the annual leave can be converted to sickness holiday
The Supreme Court's 5-4 decision upholding the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act--Obamacare, including its individual mandate--was bitter medicine for conservatives.
But the NHS in North Wales is itself a sick patient and needs a dose of very bitter medicine if it is to be nursed back to financial health.