Expressing a wish or a regret
Use of I wish / if only:
There are three distinct types of I wish / if only sentences:
- Wish, wanting change for the present or future with the simple past.
- Regret with the past perfect.
- Complaints with would + verb.
Expressing a wish:
If only / I wish + simple past
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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)
- 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”.
I wish I were a millionaire!