idiom: to give someone a hard time


Today I think it’s time for another idiom, so I’d like to write about the expression “to give someone a hard time”.  This has the meaning of teasing another person. For example:

Every time I see Jennifer I like to give her a hard time about her job. She keeps saying she’s going to quit, but she never does. I love teasing her about it.

My younger brother just got his first girlfriend, so I love giving him a hard time about it.

Would you please stop giving Keith a hard time about spilling wine on his boss’ shirt? He’s very sensitive about it and doesn’t like it when you tease him.

When we give someone a hard time about something, it’s usually not meant to be unkind. The teasing is meant to be in good fun. However, some people don’t like it when we give them a hard time about something and can get upset.


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