Synonyms & Antonyms of frustrate

1 to prevent from achieving a goal
  • a multitude of conflicting opinions frustrated me in my attempt to find a computer that best suits my needs

Synonyms for frustrate

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Antonyms for frustrate

2 to lessen the courage or confidence of
  • challenge the math student, but don't frustrate him or her with overly difficult problems

Synonyms for frustrate

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Antonyms for frustrate

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Frequently Asked Questions About frustrate

How does the verb frustrate differ from other similar words?

Some common synonyms of frustrate are baffle, balk, foil, and thwart. While all these words mean "to check or defeat another's plan or block achievement of a goal," frustrate implies making vain or ineffectual all efforts however vigorous or persistent.

frustrated attempts at government reform

When is baffle a more appropriate choice than frustrate?

The words baffle and frustrate can be used in similar contexts, but baffle implies frustration by confusing or puzzling.

baffled by the maze of rules and regulations

When could balk be used to replace frustrate?

In some situations, the words balk and frustrate are roughly equivalent. However, balk suggests the interposing of obstacles or hindrances.

officials felt that legal restrictions had balked their efforts to control crime

When might foil be a better fit than frustrate?

The words foil and frustrate are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, foil implies checking or defeating so as to discourage further effort.

foiled by her parents, he stopped trying to see her

In what contexts can thwart take the place of frustrate?

The meanings of thwart and frustrate largely overlap; however, thwart suggests frustration or checking by crossing or opposing.

the army thwarted his attempt at a coup

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Time Traveler for frustrate

Time Traveler

The first known use of frustrate was in the 15th century

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Cite this Entry

“Frustrate.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Oct. 2021.

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More from Merriam-Webster on frustrate

Nglish: Translation of frustrate for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of frustrate for Arabic Speakers


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