tread carefully

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tread carefully

To delicately handle or approach a situation in order not to upset or worsen the current circumstances, which may be precarious. Tread carefully when you ask Mom whether she's going to the party. She's been acting weird about it. We need to start treading carefully when it comes to our diplomacy—we can't afford to alienate any allies.
See also: carefully, tread

tread ˈcarefully, ˈwarily, etc.

be very careful about what you do or say: The government will have to tread very carefully in handling this issue. OPPOSITE: throw caution to the wind(s)
See also: tread
References in periodicals archive ?
While trying to work one another out, the team treads carefully in the case of a murdered vicar who received racist hate mail in the lead up to his death.
DICK Style front runner GREAT STRIDES Mariah Carey, left, goes hell for leather while Jane Fonda prefers softer suede Nancy is Strictly a step ahead THIGH SAY Star Vanessa Hudgens and Katie Price INATIS Disney starlet Ashley Tisdale treads carefully ESSEXY TOWIE's Amy Childs shows off her boots in Brentwood SHINY Corrie's Helen Flanagan's patents RACY Madonna in risque lace-up panto boots
Block treads carefully around a taboo love, revealing the complexity of human emotion, but showing us that instinct is often more reliable than we know.
But she knows how thin the ice is, and her lengthy methodological introduction treads carefully.
The Russian Orthodox Church, which has historically been squeezed between Muslim and western Christian worlds, still treads carefully between what has been seen as two sides of a conflict of civilizations.
DICKJ Style front runner Mariah Carey, left, goes hell for leather while Jane Fonda prefers softer suede GREAT STRIDES Nancy is Strictly a step ahead Star Vanessa Hudgens and Katie Price THIGH SAY Disney starlet Ashley Tisdale treads carefully INATIS TOWIE's Amy Childs shows off her boots in Brentwood ESSEXY Corrie's Helen Flanagan's patents SHINY RACY Madonna in risque lace-up panto boots