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To try to get as much of something from someone else, especially sympathy, kindness, respect, etc. They found a little bit of celebrity when their book was published a couple years ago, and they've been milking it ever since. Your aunt is going out of her way to take care of you while you're sick, so don't milk it.
See also: milk
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
1. tv. to attempt to persuade an audience to laugh or applaud. She went on milking the crowd for adulation long after they had demonstrated their appreciation.
2. tv. to attempt to get recognition from an audience. His performance was marred by an amateurish attempt to milk applause.
McGraw-Hill's Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions Copyright © 2006 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.
To take advantage of the help or kindness of others, as when one acts as if one still needs help after recovering from an illness.
See also: milk
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
- leave (one) to the mercy/mercies of (someone or something)
- leave somebody/something to the mercy/mercies of somebody/something
- do (one) a kindness
- do a kindness
- kill with kindness, to
- harden (one's) heart against (someone or something)
- harden your heart against somebody/something
- steel (one's) heart against (someone or something)
- steel one's heart against
- kill (one) with kindness