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 ?
When Things Fell Apart is an analysis based upon statistical evidence presented in the appendix, which is part four of the book.
When she didn't have her family, it all fell apart.
Williams fell apart and went on to lose 6-4, 6-0 and said: "I don't think it was a very fair call.
The marriage fell apart when I had a brief affair with a woman at work who was kind to me.
Just when things were going well, and better than originally expected, everything fell apart for the Antelope Valley College women's soccer team.
Dyer said: "I remember under Souness we were going great guns, but the injuries came at the wrong time and we fell apart.
More often than not though, the JetHawks' pitching fell apart during a stretch in which they lost four consecutive games and seven of nine that dropped them to four games out of first place in the Southern Division first-half standings.
A LORRY owner hanged himself after his life fell apart because he was wrongly jailed, an inquest heard yesterday.
The young team, starting mostly juniors, admittedly fell apart and began bickering and pointing fingers at each other in the huddle.
JOHNNY Vaughan suffered a really embarrassing moment on his wedding night - his lucky underpants fell apart.
Buck'' McKeon, R-Santa Clarita, amended an unrelated bill and prohibited the dump from being built in the national forest, and plans for the Elsmere Canyon Landfill fell apart.
The fish cooked nicely and didn't stick too much but fell apart at the end, although it was juicy inside.