resign oneself to, come to terms with

bonbon2023

Senior Member
Korean(south)
Source:Collins Cobuild Advanced Learner's Dictionary:If you resign yourself to an unpleasant situation or fact, you accept it because you realize that you cannot change it.
Pat and I resigned ourselves to yet another summer without a boat

I've seen people use 'come to terms with' to a person having a hard time. Does the example sentence is the identical as "Pat and I come to terms with the yet another summer without a boat."?
 
  • Parla

    Member Emeritus
    English - US
    To resign yourself to something is as you've defined it: you accept something over which you have no control.

    To come to terms with someone is to reach an agreement with that person. I wouldn't use it to describe the fact of a summer without a boat.
     

    bonbon2023

    Senior Member
    Korean(south)
    I looked it up to check the phrase. There's also another meaning different from reach an agreement. Here's the definition of 'come to terms with' listed in Collins 30th anniversary edition:
    learn to accept something that is difficult or unpleasant
    He finally came to terms with his father's death.

    Don't you use the above definition?
     

    Parla

    Member Emeritus
    English - US
    There's also another meaning different from reach an agreement. Here's the definition of 'come to terms with' listed in Collins 30th anniversary edition:
    learn to accept something that is difficult or unpleasant
    He finally came to terms with his father's death.

    Don't you use the above definition?
    Yes, or something very much like it. (Sorry, I misunderstood your question; I thought it was just about coming to terms with someone.) I prefer the definition at thefreedictionary.com: "to start to accept and deal with a difficult situation" (emphasis added). It goes beyond mere acceptance, and I think it's more accurate.

    It's generally used, as in your example, in the case of an emotionally difficult situation. I wouldn't apply it to the boatless summer.
     

    sound shift

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Another difference is the timing.

    You resign yourself to something before it happens. "He hadn't done much business and resigned himself to another year without a holiday/vacation."
    You come to terms with something after it happens. "Five years after his death, she finally came to terms with the loss of her husband."
     
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