I love reading these reviews. Don't force it, it won't break. Get a Hario or Yama filter assembly, a bunch of circular coffee filters and never worry again about the filter clogging with fine grinds. Or just get Hario filters and use the Bodum filter piece and it will work well.
Several times in my life, like now, I use this coffee maker every day to make my coffee. Take you time separating the upper and lower bowls and you won't break the funnel part. The parts are easy to clean, they get thrown in the dishwasher once every two weeks, and the thing makes damn good coffee.