In Turkish, we have an idiom that can be roughly stated as, "Get (something's) eye blind."

We say this about something unwanted, especially when it is unavoidable yet must be accepted. For instance, if you couldn't go to college because you don't have money, you could say, "Get poverty's eye blind!" This idiom also contains a strong sense of reproach.

I am looking for an English equivalent of—or at least something roughly similar to—this idiom. (It need not be another idiom as long as there is a presentable way to articulate it) I would be glad for your help.

  • When you say "presentable", how presentable are you talking about? In the situation you describe, people normally say: "screw poverty, anyway" or "poverty's a bitch" (taken from the expression "life's a bitch, and then you die") But none of these are what I would call "presentable" in a professional context. Otherwise, the following might work: "damn poverty, anyhow" Sep 5, 2017 at 8:11
  • Actually all of those, particularly, "screw poverty", are quite suitable in terms of meaning, but as you said, it must also be presentable. Can you think of a more formal version of them?
    – Master-D.
    Sep 5, 2017 at 8:21
  • 1
    A more mild way to say it might be "to hell with poverty, anyway!" or "poverty's a drag." If you can't use "hell" either, you can say "confound poverty, anyway!" But that's so prudish it's almost funny. Sep 5, 2017 at 8:47
  • The great UK band Gang of Four released a 45-rpm single in 1981, each using an idiomatic expression that might be relevant: "To Hell with Poverty" (echoing filistinist's suggestion above) and my favorite, "Capital (It Fails Us Now)." I frequently use expressions such as "Technology: it fails me now" when things work badly or don't work at all. And of course expressions like "To hell with e-mail" are ubiquitous.
    – Sven Yargs
    Sep 18, 2017 at 2:49
  • Could you include another example as well, please? Currently, you are in danger of only getting poverty-related answers, and I'm not sure that's what you're after. It seems that the Turkish expression is infinitely adaptable to circumstances.
    – Andrew Leach
    Oct 5, 2017 at 9:52

3 Answers 3


To 'turn a blind eye to' looks similar in form, but doesn't work here, meaning to deliberately overlook a wrongdoing.

To put [something] out of [one's] mind is a transparent metaphor and is often[*] used for a deliberate choice to stop thinking about something unpleasant or out of reach at the moment.

Not to be confused with '[being] out of one's mind'!

Examples, courtesy of Ludwig.guru:

Then we put it out of our minds. The New York Times

I tried to put it out of my mind. Forbes

"You try to put it out of your mind," said Ms. Davis's sister Crystal. The New York Times

The oil boom ended all that and put it out of mind. The New Yorker [*non-volitional]

Unfortunately, no seats became available, so I put it out of my mind. The New York Times

I put it out of my mind and didn't think about it until a month later. The New Yorker

A lot of it is just trying to put it out of your mind and maybe it'll disappear. The New York Times

and a variant: As to the passive-aggressive nonsense of the anonymous note, try to put it out of your head. The New York Times

As the penultimate example shows, there is a [possible?] association with denial.

  • Thank you for your answer, Edwin, but this idiom also contains a strong sense reproach, rather than trying not to think about the unwanted situation. Can you think of any expression that complains about a situation?
    – Master-D.
    Sep 5, 2017 at 7:36
  • @Master-D. Can you add this information into your question please? At the moment the question isn't clear on what the idiom conveys.
    – Spagirl
    Sep 5, 2017 at 7:50
  • It may not have reached idiom status [yet?], but Sherlock's 'Get out of my head!', especially with the association with the Stones' pop song, is quite acceptable colloquially. Sep 5, 2017 at 7:51
  • I just edited it, @Spagirl and thank you, Edwin. I'd be glad if you or anyone else could just share it if they can think of anything else.
    – Master-D.
    Sep 5, 2017 at 7:58

An expression in U.S. English that may capture the sense of the phrase "get [something's] eye blind" in Turkish is "grin and bear it." Here is the entry for that expression in Christine Ammer, The Facts on File Dictionary of Clichés, second edition (2006):

grin and bear it Put up with adversity with good humor. This expression originated as grin and abide. It so appears in Erasmus Darwin's Zoonomia (1794), "WE have a proverb where no help could be had in pain, 'to grin and abide,'" so it presumably was a well-known saying by then. A few years earlier W. Hickey wrote in his Memoirs (1775), "I recommend you to grin and bear it (an expression used by sailors after a long continuance of bad weather)." It has been a cliché for about a hundred years, well known enough for poet Sam Walter Foss (1858–1911) to pun on it in his The Firm of Grin and Barrett ("Never yet has any panic scared the firm of Grin and Barrett").

I might add to Ammer's commentary that a long-running (1930–2015) newspaper cartoon by George Lichtenstein bore the name "Grin and Bear It," which is where I first encountered the expression. Although Ammer calls "grin and bear it" a cliché in the book cited above, she might just as well have characterized it as an idiom—and in fact she does exactly that in Christine Ammer, The American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms, second edition (2013):

grin and bear it Put up good-humoredly with adversity, with good humor, as in It;s no fun being sick for the holidays, but you might as well grin and bear it. ...


More general, but equally usable would be the simple "Life's hard" or "life sucks" or "X sucks" e.g. poverty sucks.

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