destabilize

To destabilize something is to undermine it, or to make it much less stable. Seeming uncertain or confused can destabilize a teacher's ability to control a class.

Political protesters might seek to destabilize a government or other institution, and lying to your best friend can destabilize your relationship. In both cases, the underlying stability of a situation is shaken, or made less sturdy. The earliest use of destabilize was in a physical sense, if something was literally unstable or shaky. By the 1920s, the word came to also have a more political meaning.

Definitions of destabilize
1

v make unstable

“Terrorism destabilized the government”
Synonyms:
destabilise
Antonyms:
stabilise, stabilize
make stable and keep from fluctuating or put into an equilibrium
Type of:
alter, change, modify
cause to change; make different; cause a transformation

v become unstable

“The economy destabilized rapidly”
Synonyms:
destabilise
Antonyms:
stabilise, stabilize
become stable or more stable
Type of:
change
undergo a change; become different in essence; losing one's or its original nature

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