eat (away) at (someone or something)1. To continually bother or worry someone. The precarious state of my finances has really begun to eat at me. I'm worried that your critical comments have begun to eat away at Tiffanyshe seems very subdued these days.2. To erode or wear something away. Don't use that harsh cleanerit will eat away at a soft metal like this.See also: eat
eat away atDestroy gradually, erode; also, worry one constantly. For example, The sea has been eating away at the outer banks for years, or The fact that he failed the test is eating away at him. [Early 1800s] See also: away, eatSee also:
eat (away) at (someone or something)
stay abreast of (someone or something)
gripe about (someone or something) to (someone or something)
browbeat (one) into (something)
gripe about (someone or something)
throw mud enough, and some will stick
eat away atIdiom(s): eat away at sb or sth
to remove parts, bit by bit. John's disease was eating away at him. The acid in the rain slowly ate away at the stone wall.
eat away at|eat|eat awayv. phr. To psychologically gnaw at; to worry someone. Fear of the comprehensive examination was eating away at Sam.