not be a bed of roses
be not a bed of roses
To be a challenging and/or unpleasant situation. Of course that project is not a bed of roses—why else would they assign it to a lowly intern like me? Being around my ex-boyfriend is not a bed of roses.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
not be a bed of rosesor
be no bed of roses
If you say that a situation is not a bed of roses or is no bed of roses, you mean that it is not all pleasant, and that there are some bad parts too. Life for the Prime Minister has not been a bed of roses. He had looked forward to this job, though he had known it would be no bed of roses. Prison life is certainly no bed of roses. Note: You can also say that a situation is not all roses. His time with the transport union was not all roses. Note: The bed referred to here is a flower bed.
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012