What Does To Burst Your Bubble Mean?

Burst Your Bubble Meaning

Definition: To share new information with someone that will disappoint him or her.

This expression is often spoken as I hate to burst your bubble, but

Origin of Burst Your Bubble

This idiom may have been inspired by the practice of blowing bubbles with chewing gum. Imagine a young child chewing gum who decides to blow a bubble. The child is very happy and grows happier as the bubble grows larger and larger.

burst that bubbleAll of a sudden, someone comes along and pops the bubble, and the child becomes upset.

Bubble gum was invented in 1928, and this expression began appearing in written form shortly after that.

Examples of Burst Your Bubble

Here is an example of the idiom being used by a math professor and her student.

Student: I finally got the answer correct! I’m a math genius! I’m a child prodigy!

Teacher: I hate to burst your bubble, but, actually, your answer is incorrect.

Student: Are you kidding me?

Teacher: Sorry, but I’m afraid not.

bursting your bubbleIn this example, two friends are discussing a possible romantic interest.

Monica: I’ve been dying to tell you this! I think that my boyfriend is going to propose.

Janice: That’s such big news! How do you know?

Monica: I found a diamond ring in his sock drawer the other day.

Janice: Uh oh.

Monica: What do you mean “uh oh”?

Janice: It’s just that, well, I don’t want to burst your bubble, but he got that ring for his mother.

Monica: His mother?

Janice: Yes, as a birthday gift. He told me the other day. Sorry!

More Examples

This excerpt uses the idiom to warn that someone is about to share some negative information about a beloved celebrity.

  • If you’re among those who saw only the good and the brilliant in her work and admired the bumps in her road, so artfully reported, Richard Cohen would like to burst your bubble. –New York Times

The second excerpt uses the idiom in a quote from a reality TV star who wants to shatter the public’s misconception that she is dating someone.

  • Kardashian tried to shoot down the rumor Wednesday by tweeting: “Sorry to burst your bubble. When a couple drinks, a little flirting and an invasion of privacy collide things may look crazy.” –New York Post

Summary

The phrase to burst your bubble is another way to say that someone is destroying someone’s positive conception of something with bad news.

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