drive (one) to distraction

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drive (one) to distraction

1. To render one unable to focus; to distract one. Leave your sister alone—she's got to finish her homework, and you are driving her to distraction.
2. To annoy or frustrate one to the point of exasperation. A week on vacation with my relatives is enough to drive me to distraction. That loud beeping noise is driving me to distraction!
See also: distraction, drive

drive someone to distraction

Fig. to confuse or perplex someone. Can't you see you're driving her to distraction? The problems I am having with my boss are driving me to distraction.
See also: distraction, drive

drive someone to distraction

If something or someone drives you to distraction, they annoy you very much. Nothing I said or did would get them to tidy up. It drove me to distraction. His obsessive attention to detail drove to distraction the artists and workers with whom he collaborated. Note: Distraction is an old word for madness.
References in periodicals archive ?
Alcoholics and ex-prisoners drive him to distraction with the often hilarious scams they indulge in.
It seems everywhere the poor bloke goes 38 million drivers are lurking around the corner just waiting to drive him to distraction - and, by golly, distract him they do.
What he has left of it now is again open to discussion, as is how seriously he is taking this week on a short, tricky course that could drive him to distraction but which he could easily demolish if he cared to use what remains of his brain.
Ed beds a series of topless lovelies with increasing satisfaction - until they drive him to distraction.
sparkplug from a sump, but you'll drive him to distraction in these.