How to Use I Wish / If Only in Sentences

When you say “I wish…” you are talking about something that you want but probably will not happen, or you don’t think will happen. Learn how to use I Wish / If Only in this lesson.

How to Use I Wish / If Only

There are three distinct types of  I wish / if only  sentences:

  1. Wish, wanting change for the present or future with the simple past.
  2. Regret with the past perfect.
  3. Complaints with would + verb.

Expressing a Wish

Form

If only / I wish + simple past

Example:

If only I knew how to use a computer. (I don’t know how to use a computer and I would like to learn how to use it)

Use

To express a wish in the present or in the future.

The simple past here is an unreal past.

When you use the verb to be the form is “were”.

Example: I wish I were a millionaire!

Expressing Regret

Form

If only / I wish + past perfect

Example:

If only I had woken up early. (I didn’t wake up early and I missed my bus.)

Use

  • To express regret.
  • The action is past.

Complaining

Form

I wish / if only + would + verb

Example:

I wish you wouldn’t arrive so late all the time (I’m annoyed because you always come late and I want you to arrive on time)

Use

  • To complain about a behavior that you disapprove.
  • Expressing impatience, annoyance or dissatisfaction with present action.

How to Use I Wish / If Only | Infographic

How to Use I Wish

How to Use I Wish / If Only in Sentences 1

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Mofid
Mofid
1 year ago

This post is so beneficial and I benefited a lot as a teacher
But when do we use
I wish I could …,

Thato Makhatha
Thato Makhatha
5 months ago

Its really helpful

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