What kind of vocabulary can be used when the person doesn't like thing that he/she has to have? For example, I have crutches and I have to use them, but I really don't want to.

2 Answers 2


I have crutches and I have to use them, but I really don't want to: they are a necessary evil.

This is a venerable trope for something distasteful yet unavoidable. Google books takes me to an 1818 edition of Sir Francis Bacon's Essays, or Counsels Civil and Moral in which the phrase appears. The essays were published in 1625.

  • 1
    Apart from earlier citations, I'd add that it is a current common expression: idioms.thefreedictionary.com/a+necessary+evil
    – user66974
    Commented Sep 15, 2015 at 6:50
  • 1
    The OED refers it back to a Greek phrase (Menander), and gives a quote dated 1547 (W. Baldwin).
    – JEL
    Commented Sep 15, 2015 at 7:40

To tolerate suggests the idea of having to accept something despite the fact you don't like or want it:

  • Accept or endure (someone or something unpleasant or disliked) with forbearance:
    • How was it that she could tolerate such noise?
  • I have to tolerate the use of crutches for another two weeks.

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