a bitter pill to swallow


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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 unwanted or unpleasant situation that someone is forced to accept. A pronoun for the person in such a situation can be mentioned between "pill" and "to," as in "a bitter pill for her 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 to swallow, but it made me a better worker.
See also: bitter, pill, swallow

bitter pill to swallow

Fig. an unpleasant fact that has to be accepted. (Does not involve pills or swallowing.) It was a bitter pill for her brother to swallow when she married his enemy. We found his deception a bitter pill to swallow.
See also: bitter, pill, swallow

bitter pill to swallow

An unpleasant fact, disappointment, or humiliation that is difficult to endure. For example, Failing the bar exam was a bitter pill to swallow, but he plans to try again next year . [Late 1500s]
See also: bitter, pill, swallow

a bitter pill to swallow

or

a bitter pill

COMMON If a fact or a situation is a bitter pill to swallow or a bitter pill, it is difficult or unpleasant to accept. Their chief executive said the failure to win the contract was a bitter pill to swallow. I'm not going to tell you this is not a bitter pill for the armed forces, because clearly it is. Note: You can say that someone swallows a bitter pill if they have to accept something difficult or unpleasant. Our people have swallowed a bitter pill in accepting this peace agreement.
See also: bitter, pill, swallow
References in periodicals archive ?
That was what made it a bitter pill to swallow, the decisiveness of it, the finality of it.
The Newport setback was a bitter pill to swallow for manager Dean Thomas and he'll be wanting a far more disciplined and committed performance from his lads this evening and more importantly the three points to help the Knitters get away from the lower reaches of the Premier Division table.
It may be a bitter pill to swallow but under the terms of the Good Friday Agreement the republicans who are being held in Castlerea prison are entitled to be released on licence.
Midfielder Dave Savage, who scored the opening goal for the Cobblers, said: "Relegation is a bitter pill to swallow but if we keep this side together we can be confident of promotion next season."
While London have clearly made strides in the last few years, losing to them will still be a bitter pill to swallow, particularly after a replay.
2 RICKIE LAMBERT described Shaun Maloney's late equaliser as a bitter pill to swallow after the Saints had to settle for a point against Wigan.
It's a bitter pill to swallow after his Achilles surgery last season."
"It's a bitter pill to swallow but it's important that we regroup now and don't let it affect us too much.
With so many storylines concerning Susan, Lynette, Gaby and Bree left wide open, it will come as quite a relief to many viewers to see them finally tied up once and for all - although the prospect of no more episodes will be a bitter pill to swallow.
"Unfortunately, the cuts we've had to make in getting rid of the pros was a difficult decision and a bitter pill to swallow.
"It's a bitter pill to swallow - we had so much of the game but couldn't convert that into points.
OLLY BARKLEY today reflected on England's latest RBS 6 Nations calamity and admitted: ``It is a bitter pill to swallow. ''
Defeat will be a disaster for either June and being out of the Championship in June will be a bitter pill to swallow for the loser.
* SIR - Nick Clegg and David Cameron's rollicking dance of love and friendship makes good headlines and photo opportunities; but for those of us who hoped that the Liberals would act with integrity against the arms trade, against nuclear weapons, and against the war in Afghanistan it is a bitter pill to swallow.
To be confronted by a hideous joke of a building costing so far an unbelievable pounds 430 million was indeed a bitter pill to swallow.