pull the rug (out) from under (someone)

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pull the rug (out) from under (someone)

To suddenly or unexpectedly remove or rescind support, help, or assistance from someone; to abruptly leave someone in a problematic or difficult situation. I felt like someone had pulled the rug out from under me when my health insurance said it was going to stop paying for my medical bills. I'd love to quit my job, but I just can't pull the rug from under my team like that.
See also: pull, rug
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

pull the rug out (from under someone)

Fig. to make someone or someone's plans fall through; to upset someone's plans. Don pulled the rug out from under me in my deal with Bill Franklin. I was close to getting the contract until Don came along and pulled out the rug.
See also: out, pull, rug
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

pull the rug out from under

Remove all support and assistance from, usually suddenly. For example, Stopping his allowance pulled the rug out from under him, forcing him to look for a job . This metaphoric term alludes to pulling on a rug a person is standing on so that he or she falls. [Mid-1900s]
See also: out, pull, rug
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.

pull the rug (out) from under

Informal
To remove all support and assistance from, usually suddenly.
See also: pull, rug
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.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Director Jim Mickle pulls the rug from under us about 30 minutes in.
Side Effects is built on the rock-solid foundations of Burns's script, which repeatedly pulls the rug from under us just as we begin to think we know what is going on.
Gilroy gleefully pulls the rug from under us at the same time as the characters, relishing each hairpin twist and turn.
It is this sense of openness that we want to cultivate, so when life pulls the rug from under us we don't have to feel like a rock sinking to the bottom of the ocean.
The film is built on the rock-solid foundations of a script which repeatedly pulls the rug from under us just as we begin to think we know what is going on.
Gilroy gleefully pulls the rug from under us at the same time as he does the characters, relishing each hairpin twist and turn.
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