Idioms for Sadness

Idioms for Sadness
Photo by Kristina Tripkovic / Unsplash


All of us wish to be happy. However, life’s not always fair and we have our fair share of sadness. And without sadness, we can’t truly appreciate all the joyful moments that we have. And while you can use the word ‘sad’ or one of its synonyms to talk about how you’re feeling, using an idiom makes your English more native-like. So here are 10+ Idioms for sadness along with their meanings and example sentences.


Cry One’s Eyes Out

If you cry your eyes out, you cry a lot and for a long time.

I cried my eyes out when he fired me.

Down In The Dumps

Someone who is down in the dumps is depressed or feeling gloomy.

My son’s bike got stolen last Sunday. He’s been down in the dumps since.

Origin: 16th century

Down In The Mouth

When someone is down in the mouth, they look unhappy, discouraged or depressed.

You look a bit down in the mouth. What’s the matter?

Note: It is an informal idiom.

Face Like A Wet Weekend

If someone has a face like a wet weekend, they look sad and miserable.

What’s wrong with Henry? He’s got a face like a wet weekend!

Note: Primarily heard in the UK.

Your Heart Sinks

If your heart sinks, you feel very unhappy and despondent.

My heart sank when I saw the amount of work waiting for me.

(Have a) Lump In Your Throat

If you have a lump in your throat, you have a tight feeling in your throat because of a strong emotion such as sadness or gratitude.

The movie was so touching that I had a lump in my throat.

To Be Out Of Sorts

To be slightly ill or slightly unhappy

Elizabeth was out of sorts and decided to take a day off from work.

Feel Blue/ To Have The Blues

To feel sad or depressed.

He’s been feeling blue since the day she left him at the altar.

Sour Grapes

Used to refer to an attitude in which someone is unhappy due to jealousy for not being able to have something

He didn’t think I deserved to win, but I think it’s just sour grapes.

Grin And Bear It

To accept a difficult situation as there is no other choice.

Well, a delayed flight isn’t an ideal situation, but we’ll just have to grin and bear it.

A Misery Guts

Someone who is miserable and unhappy all the time

I’m such a misery guts lately, I complain all the time.

Note: It’s a derogatory and informal idiom.