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 ?
After looking through the finances and seeing the numbers, it is no surprise that the club is falling apart. It is difficult to see how the expenditure was made the way it was, especially over the last three years."
The world may be falling apart, but we can hold a book in our hands.
basket, and how it was falling apart. And it seemed to me the first thing we had to do was to change the nature of the debate.
"We'll probably look at maybe touring it later," says Matt of The Art of Falling Apart, which has soundscapes by Wizards of Twiddly's Simon James.
I'd encourage you to be honest with her about where you were when the marriage started falling apart and where you are now emotionally.
Keri is one of those women who everyone counts on to know what has to be done and to do it without falling apart herself.
Also named as a double winner at tonight's British Academy Television Craft Awards was Channel 4's hard-hitting Falling Apart, for which Brian Hill won best new director in the fiction category and Anna Maloney walked away with the new writer award.
The ancient glue used to harden the bones in the 93-year-old, 8-foot-high display was deteriorating, and the evaluators worried that the ancient relics were on the verge of falling apart.
He and I sometimes seen to be the only syndicated columnists not convinced that the United States is terminal, just falling apart where we stand.
What was once looking rosy in the garden is falling apart at the seams.
I am 70 years young now and see the country falling apart.
Cape Town, South Africa in the 1970s is a place and time of turmoil, racial unrest, and general unease as the culture and government are challenged by the underclass and the system of apartheid is falling apart. In the midst of the larger disruptions, a family's life is also fragmented by a freak accident that kills the twin brother of the hero of the book, Douglas, and results in his father leaving.