3

Let's start with the following simple sentence:

  1. I have everything I want.

Now let me follow with the negative variant:

  1. I do not have everything I want.

I have no problem with these.

What I need is to express something in between and particularly say that the positive state is not reached i.e. I need to say that I do have some of what I want but it is not everything I want. The negation variant (2) does not seem to fit correctly because it seems unclear that I have most of what I want. This is why I try to make it a positive statement.

In Russian I express that with something equivalent to:

  1. I have not everything I want.

The positive variant with almost, nearly etc. do not fit either. Consider the following extension:

  1. I am not happy because I have almost everything I want.

Does not sound right. I do need to express that I am not happy with what I got.

How do I do it right in English?

  • 1
    Your second sentence does it, I think. "I do not have everything" means "I have any amount from 0 to just less than everything", but in most contexts it means "I have some of what I want, but not all of what I want". – John Feltz Jan 10 '17 at 16:11
  • @JohnFeltz Thanks for the clarification. What about I have almost everything I want. Does it make clear that the positive state is not reached? – Zverev Evgeniy Jan 10 '17 at 16:14
  • I haven't got everything I want is a possible way to say what you ask. – SovereignSun Jan 10 '17 at 16:58
2

This appears much more difficult because

I do not have everything I want.

is not the "negative variant" you seem to think it is, which is very confusing.

I do not have everything I want is already the answer you seek, meaning exactly what you specified: I do have some of what I want but it is not everything I want.

That would normally be easier if you said:

I have some of what I want, but not everything.

Although "clever" teenagers recently went through a phase of using out-sentence negation, even that would have given:

I have everything I want… not!

A simple negation might be I have none of the things I want. Many might suggest that I have nothing I want means the same; it doesn’t. I have nothing I want means I do not want any of the things that I have.

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3

I have nearly everything I want.

almost synonyms: nearly, just about, more or less, practically, virtually, all but, as good as, close to, near, not quite, roughly, not far from, for all intents and purposes

Some of these would require a rephrasing of the sentence.

on edit:

I am not happy because I have almost everything that I want. Does not sound right. I do need to express that I am not happy with what I got. How do I do it right in English?

"My efforts have landed me just short of the mark."

"I fell short of my goal." (This would fall short of their invested principal by less than one hundred dollars.)

"I did not meet my goal, but I was close."

"I fulfilled nearly all my expectations."

On 2nd edit: If you are not happy and I've misunderstood, then how about:

I failed to reach my goal.

It did not live up to my expectations.

I fell short of accomplishing the mark I wanted.

The situation did not work out as I preferred/planned.

I still have a ways to go before I reach my goal/expectations/ the thing I desire.

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  • Thank you for the suggestion. I clarified by question to show why nearly, almost etc do not seem right. – Zverev Evgeniy Jan 10 '17 at 16:50

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