up·​set·​ting | \ (ˌ)əp-ˈse-tiŋ How to pronounce upsetting (audio) \

Definition of upsetting

: mentally or emotionally troubling or disturbing : causing feelings of worry or anxiety heard some upsetting news an upsetting experience We're up to [a deficit of] $1.5 trillion a year…. These numbers are truly upsetting.— Bill Gates Professors issue, or students demand, trigger warnings when presenting material that might be upsetting to some: depictions of rape, sexism, racism, suicide.— Yvonne Abraham

Other Words from upsetting

upsettingly adverb
an upsettingly graphic depiction of violence In comparison to male historical figures, the number of women that we learn about throughout school is upsettingly low. — Alexis Gardner

First Known Use of upsetting

1872, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of upsetting was in 1872

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Cite this Entry

“Upsetting.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Jul. 2020.

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