at arm’s length - definition and synonyms

  1. 1
    held away from your body with your arm stretched out straight

    He held the baby out at arm’s length.

  2. 2
    in a situation where you avoid dealing with or becoming involved with someone else
    keep/put someone at arm’s length:

    Sheryl’s unfriendly manner kept most people at arm’s length.

See also main entry: arm