let someone down gently

let (one) down gently

To deliver bad news to someone in the kindest or least upsetting way possible. When you tell Ed that somebody already asked you to the dance, please let him down gently. I tried to let Susan down gently, but she burst into tears nonetheless.
See also: down, gently, let

let someone down gently

seek to give someone bad news in a way that avoids causing them too much distress or humiliation.
See also: down, gently, let, someone
References in periodicals archive ?
For weekly readings call 0903 658 2005 (75p/min + access charge) For weekly readings call 0903 658 2011 (75p/min + access charge) GEMINI MAY 22 - JUNE 21 SAGITTARIUS NOVEMBER 23 - DECEMBER 21 Your diary or schedule may be packed full this weekend, and you will have to try to let someone down gently.
For more call 0903 658 2031 75p/min + network access charge Sagittarius Nov 23 to Dec 21 Your diary or schedule may be packed full this weekend, and you will have to try to let someone down gently.
our diary or schedule maybe packed full this weekend, and you will have to try to let someone down gently.
This could see you needing to let someone down gently.
It's not easy to let someone down gently in that situation, and yet it must be done.
Being a little subtler than "you're chucked" is required, though, so put that world-famous ability to yak to good use and let someone down gently.