rub (one's) nose in it(redirected from rub their nose in it)
rub (one's) nose in it
To remind one of one's failures or wrongdoings. Whenever I make a mistake, my obnoxious co-worker is always eager to rub my 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.
rub someone's nose in something (or rub it in)emphatically or repeatedly draw someone's attention to an embarrassing or painful fact. informal
This expression comes from the mistaken belief that the way to house-train a puppy or kitten is to rub their noses in their faeces or urine if they have made a mess indoors.
1963 P. M. Hubbard Flush as May I'm sorry. I've said I'm sorry…Don't rub my nose in it.