Actualizado: 30 abr 2021
I’m sure that you will have found more than once this word in the key Word Transformation and not know what to do with it!
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
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”. Example: I wish I were a millionaire!
If only / I wish + past perfect
If only I had woken up early. (I didn't wake up early and I missed my bus.)
To express a regret.
The action is past.
I wish / if only + would + verb
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)
To complain about a behaviour that you disapprove.
Expressing impatience, annoyance or dissatisfaction with a present action.
Here you have a video where it is explained:
And some related pages where you can practiseit: