What does 'I hate to be the bearer' mean?

I found this example 'I hate to be the bearer of bad news'
and I know it means 'I'm sorry to deliver bad news,'
but I'm struggling with understanding what exactly 'I hate to be the bearer' from a certain drama scene means.

con artist Treena mentioned Mary's job to someone else, and Mary is upset about it.

Mary: you violated my security “I.D.-ing” me as a marshal.

Treena: (laughs) Well… I hate to be the bearer…

Mary: Don’t screw with me, Treena. People’s lives including yours depend on me staying anonymous."

if 'the bearer' means a messenger, did Treena mean 'I'm sorry I said it instead of you'?

or, does it simply mean 'I didn't want to lie/ I didn't want to have a secret' something like that?

help, please~! thanks!

No, you are over thinking it.

It's just "I hate to be the bearer of bad news" for short. She doesn't want to break her "illusion" to her because it seems she did something bad or is about to threaten her, that's why Mary says to "not screw" with her. Or just that she shouldn't joke about bad news (note that Treena laughs).

Hope this helps!


It means I hate to be the one who carries the burden… or I hate to be the one who has to pass the burden on to you…

To be the bearer doesn't actually mean "messenger" it means "carrier" (the messenger carries the news)…

In your example, it either means that she hates to bear the burden of being the one who exposed Mary and compromised everyone's security, or she hates to bear the burden of Mary's anger.

My guess, since she's a con artist, would be that no matter what she meant, she wasn't being serious.

Bearer Of Bad News

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