be cruel to be kind

to say or do something to someone that seems unkind but is intended to help them

I told her the facts – sometimes you have to be cruel to be kind.


English dictionary. 2014.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Cruel to Be Kind — is a 1979 single by Nick Lowe, co written by Lowe and his former Brinsley Schwarz band mate Ian Gomm, that peaked at #12 in both the British and US charts that summer. In the US, where it is Lowe s most well known work, it remains his only single …   Wikipedia

  • be cruel to be kind — phrase to say or do something to someone that seems unkind but is intended to help them I told her the facts – sometimes you have to be cruel to be kind. Thesaurus: to be cruel or unkind to someonesynonym Main entry: cruel …   Useful english dictionary

  • be cruel to be kind — verb To do or say something to another person which you believe to be for their own good, and will be helpful for them in the future, although it might be painful or hurtful at this moment …   Wiktionary

  • You have to be cruel to be kind. — something that you say when you do something to someone that will upset them now because you think it will help them in the future. I told her she s just not good enough to be a professional dancer sometimes you have to be cruel to be kind …   New idioms dictionary

  • cruel — cru|el S3 [ˈkru:əl] adj [Date: 1200 1300; : Old French; Origin: Latin crudelis, from crudus; CRUDE1] 1.) making someone suffer or feel unhappy ▪ His death was a cruel blow . ▪ Sometimes life seems unbearably cruel. 2.) deliberately hurting people …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • cruel */*/ — UK [ˈkruːəl] / US [ˈkruəl] adjective Word forms cruel : adjective cruel comparative crueller superlative cruellest 1) a) someone who is cruel enjoys causing pain to other people or animals, or enjoys making them unhappy or upset a cruel parent… …   English dictionary

  • cruel — cru|el [ kruəl ] adjective ** 1. ) someone who is cruel enjoys causing pain to other people or animals, or enjoys making them unhappy or upset: a cruel parent cruel to: How could you be so cruel to someone who never did you any harm? a ) used… …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • cruel — adjective 1 causing unfair or unnecessary pain or suffering: a cruel twist of fate | a cruel blow (=a sudden event that is painful and unfair): My brother s death was a cruel blow. 2 deliberately making people or animals suffer: The older kids… …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

  • cruel — [kro͞o′əl] adj. [OFr < L crudelis < crudus: see CRUDE] 1. deliberately seeking to inflict pain and suffering; enjoying others suffering; without mercy or pity 2. causing, or of a kind to cause, pain, distress, etc. cruelly adv. cruelness n …   English World dictionary

  • Cruel Intentions 3 — DVD release cover Directed by Scott Ziehl Produced by …   Wikipedia

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