cruel

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goodbye, cruel world

cliché An exclamation, note, or statement made immediately prior to one's death, especially by suicide. We felt as though we never had closure after Tom committed suicide. We never even knew he was contemplating taking his own life, and his note merely said "Goodbye, cruel world." The gunslinger lay on the ground, bleeding into the dust. "Goodbye, cruel world," he gasped with his last breath. And with that, he perished.
See also: cruel, world

you have to be cruel to be kind

You must be blunt and honest with someone in order to help them realize something that may help them; it is sometimes necessary to hurt someone's feelings in order to tell them the truth. I'm not going to sit here and tell Judith that she's a shoo-in when she's clearly not ready for her audition. Sometimes you have to be cruel to be kind.
See also: cruel, have, kind

be cruel to be kind

To be blunt and honest with someone in order to help them realize something that may help them. This phrase expresses the idea that it is sometimes necessary to hurt someone's feelings in order to tell them the truth. I'm not going to sit here and tell Judith that she's a shoo-in when she's clearly not ready for her audition. Sometimes you have to be cruel to be kind.
See also: cruel, kind

you have to be cruel to be kind

When people say you have to be cruel to be kind, they mean that sometimes if you are unkind to someone it will be the best thing for them. `I have to be cruel to be kind,' said Lindsay. `If I don't control his food, he will eat himself to death.'
See also: cruel, have, kind

be cruel to be kind

act towards someone in a way which seems harsh but will ultimately be of benefit.
In Shakespeare 's Hamlet, ‘I must be cruel only to be kind’ was Hamlet's explanation of his reasons for bullying his mother about her second marriage.
See also: cruel, kind

be ˌcruel to be ˈkind

use unpleasant methods because they are necessary to help somebody: I was worried about Katie getting too involved with Steve so I eventually told her about his drug addiction — you’ve got to be cruel to be kind sometimes. OPPOSITE: kill somebody with kindness
See also: cruel, kind
References in classic literature ?
If you fail, John Carter," he said, "know that the cruel and heartless Thark, to whom you taught the meaning of friendship, will come out to die beside you.
Torn and bleeding from many cruel wounds, I lay panting upon the ground within the hollow of the tree, while Tars Tarkas defended the opening from the furious mob without.
That she should be forced to witness my awful death made my bitter fate seem doubly cruel.
It seemed incredible that one so lovely could yet harbor within her fair bosom a heart so cruel and relentless, and today there was a new expression in her wondrous eyes that I never before had seen there--an unfamiliar softness, and a look of suffering.
To the very death chamber of O-Mai the Cruel we came and yet we were ready to go farther; when suddenly there broke upon our horrified ears the moans and the shrieking that mark these haunted chambers and the hangings moved and rustled in the dead air.
In every mind was the same thought--O-Tar must lead them at once to the chamber of O-Mai the Cruel, or accept forever the stigma of cowardice, and there could be no coward upon the throne of Manator.
In his own heart was not a little fear of these repulsive creatures, and because of that fear, Bukawai always kept the beasts well fed, often hunting for them when their own forages for food failed, but ever was he cruel to them with the cruelty of a little brain, diseased, bestial, primitive.
How then may we keep our frail blossoms from his cruel spirits?
In the lead was Kala, for she had recognized the tones of her best beloved, and with her was the mother of the little ape who lay dead beneath cruel Sabor.
Davout was to Napoleon what Arakcheev was to Alexander- though not a coward like Arakcheev, he was as precise, as cruel, and as unable to express his devotion to his monarch except by cruelty.
This strange, cruel, and almost unaccountable ingratitude in the captain, absolutely broke the poor doctor's heart; for ingratitude never so thoroughly pierces the human breast as when it proceeds from those in whose behalf we have been guilty of transgressions.