Idiom:  lay your cards on the table


Idiom:  (put) lay (all) your cards on the table

  • explain everything that you know truthfully and completely

Note:  This idiom comes from the game of poker where the winner must show the cards in their hand by putting them down on the table face-up to prove they won the game.

You can use this idiom in any person (my, your, his, her, our, their).

Example sentences

  • If you lay all your cards on the table maybe she'll give you a second chance.
  • After my parents laid their cards on the table they realized the only thing keeping them together was my little brother and I.
  • We suggest you put all of your cards on the table and tell us exactly what happened.
  • If you lay all your cards on the table, the prosecutor will reduce the charges against you.
  • It was really hard but my daughter finally laid all her cards on the table and we were able to get her into rehab for her drug addiction.
  • When I put all my cards on the table and told my girlfriend how much I loved her, she cried and said she's actually wanted to end our relationship.
  • Never lay all your cards on the table in business or it will be difficult to negotiate deals effectively.


  • show your hand
  • show your cards

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Your turn to use the idiom "lay your cards on the table"

Practice makes progress.  It's your turn to use this idiom in your own sample sentence. I will provide feedback to make sure you use the idiom correctly.

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