fren·​e·​my ˈfre-nə-mē How to pronounce frenemy (audio)
plural frenemies
informal : a person who is or pretends to be a friend but who is also in some ways an enemy or rival
In Hollywood, everyone has lots of frenemies, usually people who are doing comparatively well at any given moment.Pete Clark
In an awkward awards ceremony, Phil [Mickelson] and Tiger [Woods] stood on the 18th green together as frenemies. Phil held up the crystal trophy for the tournament title, while Tiger squirreled away a $10 million bonus for winning the FedEx Cup …Selena Roberts

Examples of frenemy in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Gerwig plays an art-world beginner named Gen, who goes on a camping trip with a longtime frenemy, a teacher named Rachel (Bronstein), whose roommate, Alice (Amy Judd), abruptly cancels on them. The New Yorker, 16 Feb. 2024 And Barlow alleges that Garcia would repeatedly drive by their frenemy and former castmate Jen Shah’s house (which Garcia denies in the moment). Kate Aurthur, Variety, 24 Jan. 2024 To get to where the industry needs to go, there’s a good chance Nvidia will need to increasingly rely on its frenemy Intel. Diane Brady, Fortune, 9 Jan. 2024 Cabbage Patch Kids should hold cellphones that display worrisome notifications, such as an unexpected Venmo charge from a frenemy. Shirley Li, The Atlantic, 2 Mar. 2024 Perfectionism is the enemy and hot glue guns are your frenemy. Raef Harrison, Los Angeles Times, 16 Oct. 2023 The second takeaway Goldstein mentioned was his love and appreciation for costar and now close friend Phil Dunster, who plays Jamie Tartt, Roy's frenemy of sorts, on the hit Apple TV+ show. Julia Moore, Peoplemag, 16 Jan. 2024 Her relationship with ex Jules (Hunter Schafer) remains a question mark, as does Cassie’s (Sydney Sweeney) standing with frenemy Maddie (Alexa Demie) and ex-lover Nate (Jacob Elordi), who dumped her at the end of the season. Eric Andersson, Peoplemag, 6 Jan. 2024 Newsom graciously gives him a more dignified job: grape stomper at his vineyard, where his frenemy’s tantrums can be put to use. Gustavo Arellano, Los Angeles Times, 21 Dec. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'frenemy.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


blend of friend entry 1 and enemy

First Known Use

1891, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of frenemy was in 1891

Dictionary Entries Near frenemy

Cite this Entry

“Frenemy.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition


plural frenemies
: someone who pretends to be a friend but is really an enemy
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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