In the Same Boat, all

Also:
All in the same boat

Meaning of Idiom ‘In the Same Boat’

To be in the same boat means to be in a similar situation; to be experiencing the same problems or challenges. 1Kirkpatrick, Elizabeth M. The Wordsworth Dictionary of Idioms. Ware: Wordsworth, 1995.,2Heacock, Paul. Cambridge Dictionary of American Idioms]. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 2010.,3Ammer, Christine. American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2013.


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Usage

This idiom is used to refer to two or more people who are all facing the same circumstances. The word ‘all’ is often used when there are more than two people involved while ‘we’re in the same boat’ is used for only two people. In the same boat is the core phrase, with many variations possible. For example:

  • We’re all in the same boat
  • We’re in the same boat
  • All of us are in the same boat
  • We’re both in the same boat
  • You and I are in the same boat
  • You’re in the same boat with everyone else
  • They’re in the same boat

The word similar is sometimes used instead of same: “We’re in a similar boat.” This version is used when circumstances are not exactly the same but similar enough to warrant comparison.

Examples Of Use

“I’m too busy to hang out with you,” said Dave. “You’re busy? We’re all in the same boat. I barely have time to breathe,” replied Kent.

“Now that his father’s company is gone, Ted is in the same boat with the rest of us. He’ll have to work for a living.”

“I’m going to have to find a new apartment. My rent went way up,” said Karen. “Looks like we’re both in the same boat,” said Julia.

Origin

Used since the mid-1800s.

This idiom alludes to being in a small boat with other people and therefore all facing the same inherent dangers and challenges.

More Idioms Starting with I

More Boat Idioms

More ‘Same’ Idioms

 

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Sources   [ + ]

1. Kirkpatrick, Elizabeth M. The Wordsworth Dictionary of Idioms. Ware: Wordsworth, 1995.
2. Heacock, Paul. Cambridge Dictionary of American Idioms]. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 2010.
3. Ammer, Christine. American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2013.