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English definition of “strained”

strained

adjective uk   /streɪnd/ us  
If a relationship is strained, problems are spoiling that relationship: Relations between the two countries have become strained (= difficult) recently. showing that someone is nervous or worried: She was looking strained and had dark circles beneath her eyes. Jean felt uncomfortable but managed to force a strained smile.
(Definition of strained from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
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