struggle

1 of 2

verb

strug·​gle ˈstrə-gəl How to pronounce struggle (audio)
struggled; struggling ˈstrə-g(ə-)liŋ How to pronounce struggle (audio)

intransitive verb

1
: to make strenuous or violent efforts in the face of difficulties or opposition
struggling with the problem
2
: to proceed with difficulty or with great effort
struggled through the high grass
struggling to make a living
struggler noun

struggle

2 of 2

noun

1
: contest, strife
armed struggle
a power struggle
2
: a violent effort or exertion : an act of strongly motivated striving
a struggle to make ends meet
3
: tussle sense 1
during the struggle the gun went off

Example Sentences

Verb He has been struggling with the problem of how to keep good workers from leaving. They struggled for the right to vote. She struggled up the hill through the snow. She struggled to lift the package by herself, but it was too heavy. He struggled to get free of the wreckage. He's been struggling in math class for most of the year. The team has continued to struggle in recent weeks. He was living as a struggling artist in the city. Noun the struggle for civil rights There was a struggle for the gun. There was no sign of a struggle. It was a struggle getting out of bed this morning. See More
Recent Examples on the Web
Verb
Both defenses have a rough time against the run, struggle to rush the quarterback and don’t get off the field on third down. Dan Wiederer, Chicago Tribune, 19 Nov. 2022 As long as the junta remains in power, the people of Rakhine will likely struggle to reconcile their desire for self-determination with support for a shadow government stacked with Suu Kyi’s acolytes. Kyaw Hsan Hlaing, Los Angeles Times, 7 Nov. 2022 Old people, young children, and pets especially struggle to adjust. Quartz, 3 Nov. 2022 Experts and patient advocates say people with ADHD can struggle to navigate the medical bureaucracy to access alternative treatments that work. Fenit Nirappil, Anchorage Daily News, 20 Oct. 2022 People struggle with probability, processes that have multiple things happening and non-linearity. Marshall Shepherd, Forbes, 3 Oct. 2022 People invested in an existing employer retirement fund often struggle to make their portfolios profitable. Laxmi Corp, The Salt Lake Tribune, 19 Sep. 2022 In just the two Connecticut counties alone, over 119,000 people struggle to have enough to eat. Kaitlyn Keegan, Hartford Courant, 2 Sep. 2022 But the heat will last for days, and people struggle to conserve for that long. Celina Tebor, USA TODAY, 1 Sep. 2022
Noun
It's been a struggle for the Browns while waiting out quarterback Deshaun Watson's suspension. Richard Morin, USA TODAY, 18 Nov. 2022 For the Bengals, the first half was a struggle at times. Kyle Brown, The Enquirer, 17 Nov. 2022 Finding a sophisticated bag that can hold a book (and everything else) can be a struggle. Lauren Hubbard, Town & Country, 10 Nov. 2022 The collaboration was a struggle at first for Aniston, who had designed her previous home solo. Tracey Harrington Mccoy, Peoplemag, 9 Nov. 2022 Finding the right therapist can be a struggle (here are some tips on how to look for an affordable one) but Dr. Dattilo says practitioners who specialize in anxiety or perfectionism will generally have the training to help with toxic productivity. Siobhan Neela-stock, SELF, 3 Nov. 2022 There’s no inner struggle for Mosman, who found his passion for esports later than Estrada. Los Angeles Times, 2 Nov. 2022 But after looking like every yard was a struggle, Morris and the Wolfpack started pushing the ball downfield and connecting to suddenly change momentum. Aaron Beard, ajc, 28 Oct. 2022 Getting the ball past Franch was a struggle for Portland in its last matchup against the Current, which ended with a 1-1 draw in Kansas City. oregonlive, 25 Oct. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'struggle.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History

Etymology

Verb

Middle English struglen

First Known Use

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

1560, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of struggle was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near struggle

Cite this Entry

“Struggle.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/struggle. Accessed 1 Dec. 2022.

Kids Definition

struggle 1 of 2

verb

strug·​gle ˈstrəg-əl How to pronounce struggle (audio)
struggled; struggling -(ə-)liŋ How to pronounce struggle (audio)
1
: to make a great effort to overcome someone or something : strive
struggling with the problem
2
: to proceed with difficulty or with great effort
struggled through the snow
struggler noun

struggle

2 of 2

noun

1
: fight entry 2 sense 1a, contest
a power struggle
2
: a violent or strenuous effort or exertion
a struggle to make ends meet

More from Merriam-Webster on struggle

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