There are some idioms which describe different difficult situations:
- To be in a double bind (a person must choose between equally unsatisfactory alternatives) Easily understood, but very rarely used
- To be in a corner/ tight corner/ place Easily understood and used often.
- To be in a cleft stick (to have a problem which is very difficult to solve) Easily understood, but rarely used.
- To be in deep water/ waters ( in a dangerous or vulnerable situation) Easily understood, but rarely used.
- To be batting on a sticky wicket/ To be on a sticky wicket (difficult or embarrassing problem or situation) Easily understood, but a bit archaic.
- To be in a hole/ spot (in debt) Easily understood and used quite frequently.
- To be in a bad way (the patient's condition is very serious) Easily understood and used frequently.
Are they really used in your country? How often?
Do you know another idiom with this meaning?
Many Thanks to everyone!
Following on from A4's comments in #11. My notes above refer to BrE.