Definition of ‘miss out on’ from Merriam-Webster:

to miss the opportunity or obligation

Here’s my problem: I have used ‘missed out on’ in my context as a way to refer to an experience that someone didn’t get to have. This person didn’t ‘miss out on’ having the experience by their own choice, but because of external factors. The phrase ‘miss out on’ perfectly expresses what I’m trying to say, but messes up the flow of my sentence, so I looked up synonyms for the phrase. Unfortunately, all of the synonyms listed, as well as those I found on sites other than Merriam-Webster, seem to imply that an experience/event was ‘missed out on’ voluntarily, which is not what I want to insinuate at all.

Synonyms from Merriam-Webster: fail, forget, omit, neglect

Words Related To ‘miss out on’ from Merriam-Webster: disregard, ignore, overlook, overpass, pass over, pretermit,

Here is an example of the way I used the phrase: Henry wanted to know what he’d (missed out on) when his dog jumped the fence. (Imagine that he was in a conversation with two other people, but mostly listening, as they had the most to say about the topic. Because his dog jumped the fence, he had to chase after it and missed out on the rest of their exchange.)

I’d prefer a single word, though I think it’s unlikely that there is one, but any suggestions are welcome. Thanks in advance.

  • 1
    Henry wanted to know what he’d missed when his dog jumped the fence. Sep 29, 2019 at 10:26

4 Answers 4


If he thinks his dog jumping the fence made him miss out on the rest of the conversation, and he felt that the dog had taken away his opportunity to listen in.

then you might use : rob of.

But, you'll probably have to rephrase the whole sentence(as it only works here passively) in order to use it, or explain it better with another sentence.

Something along the lines of :

Henry wanted to know what he’d (been robbed of) by his dog jumping the fence.

rob someone of something

To deprive someone of something, not necessarily by theft. What you have done has robbed me of my dignity! If you do that, you will rob yourself of your future.


  • This works well. Thank you.
    – MooNieu
    Oct 7, 2019 at 0:18

Not a single word, but "lose out" might work -

Lose out

: be deprived of an opportunity; be disadvantaged.

"youngsters who were losing out on regular schooling"

In your example -

"Henry wanted to know what he’d lose out on when his dog jumped the fence."


You could just simply use "missed" -

"Henry wanted to know what he’d missed when his dog jumped the fence."

  • This one actually didn’t occur to me, but it doesn’t fit any better than ‘missed out on’ in my sentence.
    – MooNieu
    Sep 29, 2019 at 21:14

As in:

As his dog jumped the fence and Henry had to chase after it, he missed the rest of their exchange.

To fail to perceive or experience.

To miss in this sense is a failure to be a party to or to be without.


In English one can say:

To miss

People managed with even one preposition for hundreds of years. Some still do, employing alternative expressions such as

fail to

As appropriate.

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