break someone's heart

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break (one's) heart

1. To betray, destroy, or abandon one's love, as by ending a romantic relationship. I know Adam broke your heart, but there are lots of guys out there who would treat you well. To think that she would cheat on Tom after 20 years of marriage. I can never forgive her for breaking his heart like that.
2. To cause one a feeling of intense sadness, regret, or pity. It really breaks my heart having to fire such talented employees, but there's no way the company will survive if I don't. That poor, skittish cat just breaks my heart—I can't believe someone abandoned her!
See also: break, heart
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2022 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 ?
Ron Terry, general manager for Coombe Abbey Hotel, said: "We are very excited to be welcoming Heartbreak Productions to perform and we can't wait to see these live performances in the grounds of the Abbey.
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They both suffered from immense heartbreak, and now, Rafe and Sami will find themselves seeking comfort in one another as they try to deal with their respective situations on the Friday, Dec.
NOMADS suffered extra time heartbreak as they bowed out of the IRN Bru Cup after taking a first half lead in Scotland yesterday.
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THIS BOOK, by 34-year-old author and meditation teacher Lodro Rinzler, had an unusual genesis: for one week in 2015, the author did a residency in the ABC Home and Carpet store in Manhattan, where he invited strangers to speak with him for 20-minute "heartbreak appointments." He wrote the book while sitting in the store's front window.
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Synopsis: "The Abandonment Recovery Workbook: Guidance through the Five Stages of Healing from Abandonment, Heartbreak, and Loss" by psychotherapist Susan Anderson (founder of the abandonment recovery movement, including thirty years' professional experience working with victims of trauma, grief, and loss), is a long out-of-print classic that has now been brought back into print by New World Library for the benefit of a whole new generation of counselors, therapists, and the general public, The experience of abandonment can stem experiencing divorce, breakups, death, or the loss of friendship, the onset of ill health, being let go from a job, or the failure to achieve a dream, is a challenge faced sooner or later in every life.