fall apart

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fall apart

1. Literally, to break into pieces. Don't stand on that rickety old chair, it's liable to fall apart at any moment.
2. To be approaching failure. Boy, this party is really falling apart. First, there was the issue with the caterer, and now half the guests aren't coming.
3. To become very emotional, especially with sadness or grief. Poor Jane really fell apart during the funeral service. I can't watch those sappy movies because I just fall apart every time.
See also: apart, fall

fall apart (at the seams)

 and come apart at the seams 
1. . Lit. [for something] to break apart where its parts are joined. The dress fell apart at the seams. I wouldn't have thought that a coat that cost that much money would just come apart at the seams.
2. Fig. to break down mentally. Tom works too much and finally fell apart. Poor Ralph simply fell apart at the seams.
See also: apart, fall

fall apart

Collapse, break down, either physically or mentally and emotionally. For example, This chair is about to fall apart, or After his wife died, he fell apart. For synonyms for the latter usage, see come apart at the seams; go to pieces.
See also: apart, fall

fall apart

v.
1. To disintegrate, collapse, or break into pieces: The rickety chair fell apart when I sat on it.
2. To suffer a nervous breakdown: The political prisoner fell apart after years in solitary confinement.
3. To lose structure or continuity: Our vacation plans fell apart because we couldn't agree on which country to visit.
See also: apart, fall
References in periodicals archive ?
``But to be fair to Joe, he's had some terrific fights on the books that have fallen apart at the last minute.
As international negotiators headed to Bonn, Germany, in an attempt to salvage talks that had fallen apart in the face of European intransigence in December, Consumer Alert worked with the National Taxpayers Union to make sure consumers and taxpayers' voices were heard on the issue.
Austria's OMV confirmed on 27 March that talks between the oil and gas major and Germany's E.ON have not fallen apart but were continuing-contrary to a report in Austria's daily Die Presse.
I only know that the quality of their relationships with their partners is faithful, stable, and as committed as heterosexual marriages (most of which, in my theatrical world, have fallen apart far faster than many homosexual partnerships).
Somehow, they thought, inside the plasma reactor these organic molecules had collided, fallen apart and regrouped, perhaps many times and in many ways, yet still managed to form one stable product -- the source of the magic peak.