Is there any alternative idiom or phrase to replace a heavy cross to bear in the context of the following sentence

The murder incident was so tragic, where the phrase a heavy cross to bear comes to mind

And what does the word cross in the idiom actually mean? Does it mean the marking X Or the object which is used for crucification?


The reference is to Jesus carrying his cross to the place where he was executed.

Figuratively it means "something is very difficult, but you have to deal with it."

My mother's dementia was a heavy cross to bear.

It doesn't mean something was simply tragic. A murder scene is not a "heavy cross to bear", unless you mean "the police who had to record the evidence will have nightmares..."

I tend to dislike clichés, especially in writing. However, you might try a quote, attributed to Nietzsche:

The murder incident was so tragic that I was reminded of a saying of Nietzsche, "Man is the cruellest animal".


The second one. To bear a cross is to carry a burden of suffering. It is directly in accordance with the cross that Jesus was supposed to have borne on his journey up the hill to Calvary.

As for an alternative idiom, not sure I can contribute to that. The sentence structure is clumsy and unclear.

  • Is there any better way to not make it sounds clumsy. I am sorry, i am not english native speaker – MEGA Jan 9 at 0:46
  • 1
    @MEGA No, not really, this is a personal style issue, not a use of language question. – Prime Mover Jan 9 at 8:41

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