Definition of denial in US English:

denial

noun

  • 1The action of declaring something to be untrue.

    ‘she shook her head in denial’
    • ‘I tried on clothes that actually fit me and felt comfortable instead of living in denial and trying on clothing that depressed me when I couldn't get the pants above my thighs.’
    • ‘I had been in denial that anyone could be cruel enough to deny the connection between father and child.’
    • ‘This patient may be in denial about his hearing loss, or he may, as his daughter suspects, be depressed and withdrawn.’
    • ‘And now all of a sudden he's checked himself into drug rehab for 30 days, and we know that it's going to take much more than that, that he's been in denial.’
    • ‘The actual distinction isn't so much between informed versus uninformed as between in denial and not in denial.’
    • ‘The ardent supporters are still in denial about their candidates' chances, but that's only because they're unusually dimwitted.’
    • ‘And as you already noted, a lot of people are in denial and the real question is how long does it go on before the economists and the policy makers acknowledge that we do have a problem.’
    • ‘As you can see, I'm still in denial about my lack of a garbage disposal.’
    • ‘At least I'm not in denial about being in denial, right?’
    • ‘When it comes to ageing, we're in denial - hence the desperate makeovers to shave away the years with Botox, liposuction, cosmetic dentistry, nips and tucks.’
    • ‘And, though, you know, I saw some very visible changes in him, you know, he was so very much at that time in denial about what he had done to me and the magnitude of how bad it was.’
    • ‘Here is a woman so deep in denial that pathological is the only serviceable adjective appropriate for such an irrational rant.’
    • ‘And they said it's coming to you, but you're in denial.’
    • ‘Simply closing one's eyes and pretending it isn't looming, despite all the available evidence to those who want to look for it, is an exercise in denial and wishful thinking.’
    • ‘‘Self-mutilation is a behavior so shocking and cloaked in denial that it is almost never discussed'.’
    • ‘Of course, the Government denies that its proposed denial of unfair dismissal remedies to small business employees is simply a political tactic.’
    • ‘I feel sorry for him because he's still in denial.’
    • ‘He denies he is in denial about his performance, and says his confidence is not shaken.’
    • ‘Professional boxing has remained in denial that the loss of brainpower that so visibly and pitiably afflicts the boxer has nothing to do with the punches he traded for glory and profit for so long.’
    • ‘And I think they a little in denial of facing reality.’
    contradiction, counterstatement, refutation, rebuttal, repudiation, disclaimer, retraction, abjuration
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 A statement that something is not true.
      ‘official denials’
      ‘his denial that he was having an affair’
      • ‘The weight to be given by the jury to the appellant's denials and assertions was a matter for them.’
      • ‘That's far from the final word in this story of secrets and denials and no comments.’
      • ‘They should not be fobbed off with a diet of misleading statements and official denials.’
      • ‘The denials and expressions of disbelief and even disgust were therefore a bit of a surprise.’
      • ‘The extended contract and mass denials of his leaving gave it some stability.’
      • ‘Allegations were followed by admissions that were followed by denials and recanting.’
      • ‘So it boils down to his word against the vehement denials by the government officials.’
      • ‘His later e-mails found their way into the Mail and repeated denials of government officials were shown to be false.’
      • ‘They have destroyed any trust they had by engaging in obfuscations, spin doctoring and denials at every turn.’
      • ‘They emerged from a police station to detail the lurid allegations and their vehement denials.’
      • ‘I had no evidence, and would get denials or no comment if I questioned the alleged lovers.’
      • ‘Residents reacted with fury to police denials of any responsibility.’
      • ‘There have been insinuations, accusations, denials and counter-accusations.’
      • ‘If anything, any denials from him only seemed to reinforce those beliefs.’
      • ‘When their portents and prophecies fail there are excuses and denials.’
      • ‘There is a three-member court of review to hear appeals of denials of applications.’
      • ‘Spiritual doctrines do not actually limit the mind as do materialistic denials.’
      • ‘He was arrested in April and maintained his denials even after he had been picked out by the boy during identification procedures.’
      • ‘One bunch of journalists flinging accusations around while others issue the outraged denials.’
      • ‘The unrest was sparked by the death of two boys whom locals think were fleeing police, despite official denials.’
      contradiction, counterstatement, refutation, rebuttal, repudiation, disclaimer, retraction, abjuration
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2 The refusal of something requested or desired.
      ‘the denial of insurance to people with certain medical conditions’
      • ‘He asserted that his denial in the pre-trial answers to the Defendants' request for information of any association with the alliance was true.’
      • ‘When denial resulted in a patient's refusal to develop these skills, we had to intervene.’
      • ‘Then come the Insurance companies with their denial of the rightful dues to assurers.’
      • ‘Thus the ‘treatment’ in question was the refusal of support combined with the denial of the right to work.’
      • ‘On Friday his lawyer attended a court hearing, and there will be a ruling tomorrow on his request to insert his personal denial into the pages of the book.’
      • ‘What is unnatural is the denial to me of the potential to fulfill those desires.’
      • ‘Delay in getting people their unemployment and the health insurance coverage they need while they're unemployed is denial.’
      • ‘Of course, the reality is that white communities were never faced with the systematic denial of bank loans and insurance necessary to build a middle class life in a community.’
      • ‘Another obstacle to alcohol screening is concern about denial of insurance coverage if screening information appears in a patient's record.’
      • ‘Forty-eight percent of those with health insurance experience problems with their plans - denial or delay of service being the most frequent.’
      • ‘The report says the board's panel was clear that the mere denial of guilt could not, of itself, justify refusal of a progressive move through the system, including eventual release.’
      • ‘Since I have sworn, as have they, to uphold and defend that Covenant, I must respectfully concur in the denial of the request.’
      • ‘The outcome, as mentioned in Jessica Johnston's article, was denial of access to the requested documents.’
      • ‘The denial of her desire, and thus the denial of her voice, generates the type of silence that we so often find is the seed for oppression.’
      refusal, withholding, withdrawal
      View synonyms
    3. 1.3 Failure to acknowledge an unacceptable truth or emotion or to admit it into consciousness, used as a defense mechanism.
      ‘you're living in denial’
      • ‘Offering medications to patients in denial of their illness means that they have to confront their worst nightmare and acknowledge that they are very sick.’
      • ‘Some people have also referred to this approach as the ‘ostrich’ approach as often it involves the use of defence mechanisms such as denial and repression.’
      • ‘What may be perceived as a temperamental rejection of care or a psychologically based denial of illness may be a biologically based element of the illness itself.’
      • ‘Millions of Americans are in denial about their drug use and should seek treatment, according to a 2001 survey.’
      • ‘When an addict is in denial, he projects his anger onto everyone but himself, and especially upon anyone brave enough to tell him the truth.’
    4. 1.4
      short for self-denial
    5. 1.5 Disavowal of a person as one's leader.
      • ‘The Denial of Saint Peter is a painting finished around 1610 by the Italian painter Caravaggio.’
      • ‘The opening scene sets the stage for the denial episode at the end of the passage and encases the mockery of law in the center.’

Pronunciation

denial

/dəˈnīəl//dəˈnaɪəl/