What is a good way to express a wish about something that won't or is unlikely to happen?

For example:

I wish I were tall enough to be allowed on that roller coaster.

I wish I could eat that much and not gain weight.

I wish I had been born 100 years ago instead.



A good way to do this is to use the construct Conditional + いいのに.

For example:

I wish I were a tiger

I wish I were taller

I wish I had enough money to buy that car

I wish she looked pretty

It's a pretty simple construct, and any conditional form can work.

  • 2
    More naturally, よかったのに > いいのに、あったら > あれば, etc. Interestingly enough, however, you correctly used だったら. – l'électeur Jun 6 '16 at 15:55
  • Just curious, why are those more natural than what I had before? – Blavius Jun 6 '16 at 16:25
  • That makes a lot of sense, thankyou :) – debrucey Jun 6 '16 at 19:52
  • Can you also use なら and ば for this? Is there any difference in meaning? – debrucey Jun 6 '16 at 20:17
  • 2
    @Blavius いいのに is much more like "why (on earth) don't?" than counterfactual. I mean, it can be, but doesn't especially sound like. We use ればなあ/たらなあ more often if you want a non-past tense. – broken laptop Jun 7 '16 at 7:31

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.