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dilemma noun

ADJ. acute, appalling, big, difficult, genuine, great, impossible, real, serious, terrible, thorny | central, essential, fundamental The fundamental dilemma remains: in a tolerant society, should we tolerate intolerance? | familiar, perennial | human | personal | ethical, moral | policy, political

VERB + DILEMMA create, pose This poses a difficult dilemma for teachers. | be caught in, be faced with, confront, face, have They were caught in a real dilemma. | resolve, solve I could see no way of resolving this moral dilemma.

DILEMMA + VERB arise, occur, present itself the dilemma that arises when a doctor has to decide whether or not to prescribe an expensive treatment | lie The dilemma over human cloning lies at the heart of the ethical choices facing society. | confront sb, face sb The dilemma facing the country's allies was even more serious. | remain

PREP. in a/the ~ The minister is now in an impossible dilemma. | ~ about/over She faced a dilemma about whether to accept the offer or not. | ~ between the perennial dilemma between getting on at work and fulfilling family commitments

PHRASES a solution to a dilemma, a way out of a dilemma I couldn't see any way out of the dilemma.