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Is there an idiom/proverb in English which is equivalent to the Tamil proverb "every house has doorsteps" (veetuku veedu vasapadi)? The meaning of it is that everyone faces problems in life that they have to deal with; no one is totally free of problems.

Let me give an example: suppose I whine "My son is doing badly in school. He is rude and impertinent. I am really concerned about his future." My friend consoles me by saying he too is dealing with his own set of problems with his children. He says "veetuku veedu vasapadi - every house has doorsteps."

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  • It sounds like the Latin American: "En todos lados se cuecen habas."
    – Conrado
    Apr 12, 2021 at 23:48

5 Answers 5

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To quote BoldBen

The expression "We all have our crosses to bear" and similar expressions means the same thing. It comes from the Christian story of the Cruxifiction where Christ had to carry his cross to the place of his execution. Over time it has somewhat softened and come to mean "we all have things we have to put up with and deal with"

The meaning of "having one's cross to bear" is confirmed at Lexico.

Have a difficult problem or responsibility one has to deal with

And the online OED (paywalled) confirms that its origin is in the bible:

A trial or affliction viewed in its Christian aspect, to be borne for Christ's sake with Christian patience; often in to bear, take (up) one's cross, with reference to Matthew x. 38, xvi. 24, etc.

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“Into each life some rain must fall”

This quote comes from the poet Longfellow. There is a folksy but sound account of the saying in the L A Times.

The original verse from The Rainy Day:

Be still, sad heart! and cease repining; Behind the clouds is the sun still shining; Thy fate is the common fate of all, Into each life some rain must fall, Some days must be dark and dreary.

HWLongfellow

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A colloquial, sometimes jocular, slang expression that tells the listener their predicament is shared by the speaker. I believe the appendage "sister" or "dude" is more commonly said in the US.

Also, all in the same boat. In a similar situation, in the same position. For example, “Everyone's got too much work—we're all in the same boat.” This expression alludes to the risks shared by passengers in a small boat at sea. [Mid-1800s]
Dictionary.com

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"Welcome to the club"

Meaning: there are many of us in the same situation, with the same problems.

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Nobody-is-perfect:

Used when someone's mistakes or flaws are acknowledged, to remind that everyone else makes mistakes and has flaws.

(YourDictionary)

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    Sorry - but "nobody is perfect" also doesn't quite come close. Let me give an example: suppose I whine "My son is doing badly in school. He is rude and impertinent. I am really concerned about his future." My friend consoles me by saying he too is dealing with his own set of problems. He says "veetuku veedu vasapadi - every house has doorsteps." Does this help?
    – Ravi
    Apr 12, 2021 at 22:06

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