I have heard this many times, with variations like "something's gotta give", but what exactly does it mean?
closed as general reference by MetaEd♦, Mitch, Mark Beadles, Matt E. Эллен♦, J.R. Oct 18 '12 at 15:09
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From the Macmillan Dictionary entry for give:
If something that supports or holds something gives, it breaks.
"Something's gotta give" means that things are building up and the speaker expects that whatever is supporting everything is going to break under the pressure. This can be (and often is) used figuratively.