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Any single word that means "not to look forward to"? Like "dread" but not as strong, or "dislike" but for something that hasn't happened yet? "She came to _____ the two weeks of a major tournament."

Thanks for all the thought. What a great site. The context, which I should have made clearer, is that she doesn't look forward to a major tournament because she doesn't like tennis and her brother wants to watch every minute of it. The tone should be slightly amusing. "His sister, not yet a tennis player, came to ___ the two weeks of a major tournament." In this context, I think something like @user307254's "despair over" comes the closest.

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    thesaurus.com/browse/dread – Hot Licks Mar 26 '19 at 22:26
  • Please describe more carefully the emotion you’re trying to pinpoint. – Lawrence Mar 26 '19 at 23:34
  • Probly fear for strong and worry for weaker anxieties about the future. But neither of these refers necessarily to the future like look forward to does. This is one of the Time metaphor themes, like 'The Future is Ahead of Us' (the Past is behind us, so we can look back on it). Fear and worry are strictly emotional, but their source is something as yet unexperienced, though it may simply be repetition of past experiences. However, the future is not necessarily implied. – John Lawler Mar 26 '19 at 23:46

10 Answers 10

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'Apprehensive'1 or 'Apprehend'2 may be the word you're looking for.

E.g. She was apprehensive about the next two weeks of the tournament.

Or "She became/came to be apprehensive about the coming weeks of the tournament"

Alternatively, "She came to apprehend the two weeks of a major tournament"

Though I tend to generally avoid the use of the word in this form as it can easily be misunderstood as the verb of a different definition

Adjective meaning to feel uneasy, anxious or fearful about something.

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  • Please include the meaning of your suggestion. – JJ for Transparency and Monica Mar 26 '19 at 23:42
  • @JJJ Is this sufficient? – dope Mar 26 '19 at 23:59
  • Again, include reference links to dictionary. – Ubi hatt Mar 27 '19 at 5:31
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I would say that the antonym of look forward to would be have reservations about:

She came to have reservations about the two weeks of a major tournament.

From Merriam-Webster's definition of reservation:

2 b : DOUBT, MISGIVING
// had serious reservations about marriage

Of course, have misgivings about could also be used.


If you need a single word, then:

She came to question the two weeks of a major tournament. OR
She came to doubt the two weeks of a major tournament.

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1

Consider anxious:

Feeling or showing worry, nervousness, or unease about something with an uncertain outcome.
‘she was extremely anxious about her exams’
‘an anxious look’
Oxford Living Dictionaries

For your usage:

She was anxious during the two weeks before a major tournament.

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Regret[ ri-gret ]

verb (used with object), re·gret·ted, re·gret·ting.

1) to feel sorrow or remorse for (an act, fault, disappointment, etc.): He no sooner spoke than he regretted it.

Source: Dictionary.com

"His sister, not yet a tennis player, would come to regret the two weeks of a major tournament."

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1

foreboding (Cambridge Dictionary)

a feeling that something very bad is going to happen soon

She had a strange foreboding about the next two weeks of the tournament.

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I would recommend 'despair'.

According to Merriam-Webster's Dictionary (https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/despair):

despair

intransitive verb

: to lose all hope or confidence

despair of winning

transitive verb

obsolete : to lose hope for

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Reluctance[ ri-luhk-tuh ns ]

\noun

1) unwillingness; disinclination.

Source: Dictionary.com

———-

reluctant[ ri-luhk-tuhnt ]

\adjective

1) unwilling; disinclined:

Source: Dictionary.com

“His sister, not yet a tennis player, is reluctant about the two weeks of a major tournament."

“His sister is reluctant about the two weeks of a major tournament because she is not yet a tennis player ."

“His sister’s reluctance about the two weeks of a major tournament is because she is not yet a tennis player ."

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Reticent[ ret-uh-suhnt ]

\adjective

1) disposed to be silent or not to speak freely; reserved.  2) reluctant or restrained.

Source: Dictionary.com

See also reticence

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She came to be apathetic to the next two weeks of her tournament.

Apathetic means having or showing no interest about a thing which is going to happen.

Here is the link.

https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/apathetic.

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worry [about]

I was first going to suggest fear, but that's almost as far along the spectrum as dread.

Edited to add the (pretty obvious, I must say) about because of downvotes. It works:

  • "She came to worry about the two weeks of a major tournament."
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