You're white-knuckling it

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Ruthless butcher

Senior Member
Spanish (Argentina)
Hello, everyone. I need some help with the next phrase: "You're white-knuckling it, living like this". What does to white-knuckle mean? In case you need some context, this phrase was said in a tv show called "Supernatural", season 6, chapter two. Someone told this to Dean (one of the main characters) after he had been a little paranoid about the safery of some people. He was totally overprotecting them, in a way that was rather frightening.
 
  • "White-knuckling it" means doing something in a state of great tension and fear, particularly in a risky situation. It is derived from the expression white-knuckle driving, which refers to driving with the hands clutching the steering wheel so tightly that the knuckles turn white. White-knuckle driving is the kind of driving you do when you're traveling at 75 mph (about 120 km/hour) in bumper-to-bumper traffic, in the pouring rain, with large trucks in front, behind and on either side of you.
     

    pops91710

    Senior Member
    English, AE
    "We flew from Japan to Korea on an old C-54 piston-engined transport. It was a white-knuckle flight all the way". It means you are gripping the front seat or safety bar so hard, the blood is squeezed out of your hands until they are white at the knuckles.
     
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