"overstretch oneself to do"

Ume

Banned
Japanese
"overstretch oneself to do"

Is this phrase common?
Does it mean "to force oneself to do"?
1) He overstretched himself to buy a house.
2) He forced himself to buy a house.
 
  • alliegator616

    Member
    English, USA
    I don't really think this phrase is used. "To overreach" is sort of similar; that means to go too far, to try too much.
    example: When I joined twenty clubs in a month, I was overreaching.

    I hope that helps!
     

    nmuscatine

    Senior Member
    English, USA
    Here is the meaning of overstretch that you referred to
    b. trans. (refl.). To stretch one's resources, abilities, etc., to or beyond their limit; to attempt more than one can (readily) accomplish.
    (Oxford English Dictionary)

    "He overstretched himself to buy a house" means that he did not have enough money to buy a house, but nevertheless he bought one.
     

    panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    He overstretched himself to buy the house.
    Yes, he bought the house, but he is now in a difficult financial situation because really he couldn't afford it.
    (See nmuscatine's post)

    He would have been overstretching himself to buy the house.
    He didn't buy the house this time:)
     

    Ume

    Banned
    Japanese
    nmuscatine wrote: he did not have enough money to buy a house, but nevertheless he bought one.

    I think that he couldn't buy a house if he didn't have enough money.
     

    qeorqia

    Member
    Australia
    I interpret the statement as: to go out of one's way to do something. For example, "I went out of my way to take her to the movies". Or possibly it could mean to push oneself too far
     
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