Definition of soften (or cushion) the blow in English:

soften (or cushion) the blow


  • Make it easier to cope with a difficult change or upsetting news.

    ‘monetary compensation was offered to soften the blow’
    • ‘Eric sort of predicted the verdict, and he softened the blow for me.’
    • ‘They can then claim tax relief to soften the blow.’
    • ‘I should therefore be at full pay until mid-January and full benefits until the end of January, which softens the blow quite a bit.’
    • ‘The second item of news went some way towards softening the blow of the first.’
    • ‘I got a sassy new haircut yesterday… a means of softening the blow of turning 30… new look, y'know?’
    • ‘He would be upset, but she would do her best to soften the blow, and she would promise to also do her best to always be there for him, at least as a friend.’
    • ‘And as a performer, constructive criticism is all about finding something good and positive to soften the blow to the real critique of what really went on.’
    • ‘I ought to conclude with something more upbeat, a way of softening the blow, highlighting the nicer side of autumn.’
    • ‘Coming up with an honest excuse will help cushion the blow if you've got unpleasant news to convey.’
    • ‘It was as if people felt he should have softened the blow, should have held back and should, in a sense, have lied, about his findings.’
    • ‘But the government has softened the blow by handing out £4 million so a small part of the work can begin.’
    • ‘The group says dairy farmers have lost more than $200 million, even after taking into account government programs designed to soften the blow from the mad cow crisis.’
    • ‘The concept of setting up a further committee is merely an attempt on the part of the Government to soften the blow.’
    • ‘He didn't mind though - especially as I softened the blow by telling him how much I liked his Queen Victoria goes into a bar routine.’
    • ‘To soften the blow, the administration announced a beefed-up monitoring program to guard against a sudden flood of foreign steel coming into the country.’
    • ‘Numbers of possible redundancies and the timescale for them, as well as ways of softening the blow for those affected, will be discussed at a meeting of senior college managers and governors tomorrow.’
    • ‘She lost narrowly to the girl who was promising a wider choice of biscuits at breaktime. Naturally she was upset and I tried hard to soften the blow.’
    • ‘And that's quite funny because some of the contestants write the name of the person they want to evict, and they put little kisses on it or little flowers to try to soften the blow.’
    • ‘Shall I tell the news to Breanne, or would it soften the blow if she heard it from you?’
    • ‘But he softened the blow by announcing the force would receive an extra £4.45 million in special grants.’