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What is the one word for a deal that will end in loss for sure

for example a teenager doing drugs over studies is a sure loss to him how do I say that ? He will regret is one way , but my point is to emphasize that he is investing in the wrong thing.

  • A phrase won’t do? Eg backing a losing horse ? – ķ̢̫̬̺͚̻͚̹̙̔̎ͣ͆͛͛ Oct 29 '19 at 2:09
  • @k1eran how do I put it in a sentence to tell a person that he will regret this later ? "you are backing a losing horse" ? And I have never heard this one is this a British English only phrase ? – dota2pro Oct 29 '19 at 2:13
  • Yes, and since you added the phrase-request tag I've converted my comment into an answer. – ķ̢̫̬̺͚̻͚̹̙̔̎ͣ͆͛͛ Oct 29 '19 at 3:16
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As in: TFD blind alley - a noun

I tell X that the path he/she has taken is a blind alley.

  1. A mistaken, unproductive undertaking.
  • This is the correct answer as it portrays that it will eventually result in loss rather than on the beginning – dota2pro Oct 29 '19 at 15:58
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A teenager doing drugs over studies is backing a losing horse.

From McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. :

back the wrong horse.
Fig. to support someone or something that cannot win or succeed.

I don't want to back the wrong horse, but it seems to me that Jed is the better candidate.
Fred backed the wrong horse in the budget hearings.

You can also say betting/backing on the wrong (or losing) horse.

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counterproductive (M-W)

tending to hinder the attainment of a desired goal

violence as a means to achieve an end is counterproductive — W. E. Brock

Counterproductive also means "having the opposite of the desired effect" (From Oxford).

Alternately, a synonym that suggests intention or attitude:

self-defeating (M-W)

serving or tending to defeat oneself or itself : COUNTERPRODUCTIVE

A related phrase: defeating your own purpose (own being optional, used for emphasis).


BTW, a good verb to use--"backfire" (The Lantern).

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