rub nose in it

rub someone's nose in it

Fig. to remind one of something one has done wrong; to remind one of something bad or unfortunate that has happened. (Alludes to a method of housebreaking pets.) When Bob failed his exam, his brother rubbed his nose in it. Mary knows she shouldn't have broken off her engagement. Don't rub her nose in it.
See also: nose, rub

rub somebody's nose in it

  (informal) also rub somebody's nose in the dirt (informal)
to say or do something which makes someone remember that they have failed I didn't tell him I'd started another relationship. I didn't want to rub his nose in it.
See also: nose, rub