Definition of take (or get) one's lumps in US English:

take (or get) one's lumps


North American
  • Suffer punishment; be attacked or defeated.

    • ‘Good people did not do that in 1971; we took our lumps.’
    • ‘‘I took my lumps, got a job, and went on with life,’ says Stan.’
    • ‘It's a tale of two grown-ups who loved, lost, took their lumps, still loved, and hope to live happily ever after, despite everything…’
    • ‘So as the kids snickered and sarcastically posed for pictures, Dad silently took his lumps.’
    • ‘Chiropractors have been taking their lumps lately.’
    • ‘After several explosive years when their market research and analysis services could barely keep up with demand, and their conferences regularly sold out months in advance, analyst firms are taking their lumps along with their clients.’
    • ‘I wish the guy would take his lumps for writing a controversial book, move on, and write something else.’
    • ‘But these problems are mounting and Republicans may have to take their lumps in the midterm elections instead.’
    • ‘We must eliminate our national debt by either making our currency less in value, taking our lumps and paying it off, or do the equivalent of going bankrupt as a country.’
    • ‘It's time for the behemoths of the airline industry to take their lumps.’