Expressions to Use When Complaining in French


Last Updated: August 23, 2021

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Reading time: 2 minutes

Difficulty: Intermediate-Advanced

Even if you are just going to France for a few days, it is advisable to learn some expressions on complaining, getting mad, and a few idioms that the French locals commonly use when talking to their friends.

France is also about art and you should know there is an art to expressing your feelings. Hey, it never hurts to know how to say, “It is cold enough to freeze your balls.” Get down with what is trending and use the slangs and styles below.

French Expressions to complain french to english
Y a de l’abus! That's going too far!
la blague joke
bouffer to eat
à la bourre running late
C'est quoi ça? What’s this?
Ça marche? Is that all right? Is that acceptable?
cafouíller to mess things up ( to make a balls of something)
chopper to catch
le comble the absolute limit
cramer to go up in smoke, to burn (for food)
débordé, être to be overwhelmed (usually by work)
démarrer to start work, to get going (starting a car)
dingue crazy, mad
foutre*; Qu’est-ce qu’il to do
fout*? en avoir rien à foutre*I don’t give a damn
aux frais de at the expense of ….:…. is paying
furax really mad
grave really ( when used as an adverb)
marché: par dessus l’marché to top it all (crown it all)
marre: en avoir marre to be sick of something, to have as much as you can take
péter un plomb to blow a fuse ( to bust a gut)
péter to blow up, to fart, to break down
le poireau, faire to hang around (about)
poireauter to be kept waiting, to hang around
pousser: Faut pas pousser. Don’t push your luck.
râler to moan, complain
ras le bol: en avoir ras le bol to be sick and tired of something,/to be fed up with
remettre ça start all over again
remuer to stir, to get someone moving
rincer, se faire to get soaked
le salaud bastard
le saligaud* bastard
le salopard* bastard
saturer to have had enough of something
se casser*to split, to beat it ( synonym on se tire)
se ficher du monde not to give (care) a damn about something
se les geler* cold enough to freeze your balls off
trempé (jusqu°aux os) soaked ( to the bone/skin)
Y a pas l’feu! No rush! Calm down!


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About the author 

Frederic Bibard is the founder of Talk in French, a company that helps french learners to practice and improve their french. Macaron addict. Jacques Audiard fan. You can contact him on Instagram

  • Super,très utile ! je cherchais depuis longtemps comment dire ce que signifie “par dessus le marché” 🙂 est-ce que “par là-dessus” c’est vraiment équivalent comment l’indique le wiktionnary ou bien il y a des différences ? merci 🙂

  • […] voulez parler le français de façon automatique et sans effort comme un vrai français ? French expression: Complaining. – Let's speak french ! □ dialogue 01 → à la gare □ dialogue 02 → à la pharmacie □ […]

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