break someone's heart

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break (one's) heart

To cause one to feel great sadness. This phrase is often said about the end of a romantic relationship. I know Adam broke your heart, but there are lots of guys out there who would treat you well. That poor, skittish cat just breaks my heart—I can't believe someone abandoned her!
See also: break, heart
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

break someone's heart

Cause severe emotional pain or grief. For example, If the verdict is guilty, it will break her mother's heart. This hyperbole has appeared in works by Chaucer, Shakespeare, and George Bernard Shaw, among others. In noun form it appears as both a broken heart and heartbreak (Shaw wrote a play entitled Heartbreak House, 1913). Today it also is used ironically, as in You only scored an A-minus on the final? That breaks my heart! [Late 1300s]
See also: break, heart
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

break someone's heart

overwhelm someone with sadness.
See also: break, heart
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

break someone's heart, to

To make someone very unhappy, to cause great grief. The expression goes back at least to Chaucer’s time, and is echoed by poets in just about every era. “But break, my heart, for I must hold my tongue,” says Hamlet (1.2). Today the cliché is sometimes spoken ironically: “You break my heart,” meaning “I really don’t feel sorry for you.”
See also: break, to
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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References in periodicals archive ?
It's always hard to break someone's heart - you'd have to be a very cold person not to feel even slightly bad about it.
"Bradley was a lovely little boy with gorgeous blond hair - I used to tell him he would break someone's heart when he was older."
Yes, it's hard to break someone's heart, but they haven't been together for nearly a year, so she's been through the heartache and I'm sure she expects him to meet someone else.
It's hard to break someone's heart, especially when they haven't done anything wrong.
All he's certain of is he'll tell the standby-players their fate early, because "there's no easy way to break someone's heart".
I'm afraid there is no easy way to break someone's heart, but it's better for you to do it now than drag things on, which prevents either of you from finding someone else to be happy with.