Am I crazy? If I am, would I realize it?

Why can't I use will here? I think it is in first conditional form. So will should be used


If you were to substitute will here, you would change the meaning of your question to involve the future. Your question becomes one of determining the fact at some unknown future time.

A more standard way of phrasing in the present tense would be either

Am I crazy? If I were, would I realize it?

or more colloquially

Am I crazy? If I were, how would I know?

Note the use of were which in this case is about conditionality, not about past tense.

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  • So can we use, " If I am" instead of "If I were" – ramteja guthikonda Nov 28 '19 at 11:17
  • It is not correct to use "am" in the conditional clause, but everyone would understand what you are trying to express. – Brian B Nov 30 '19 at 16:52

What you need here is called the subjunctive mood and the conditional.

First, you are expressing a hypothetical, so you should use the conditional form "would" instead of "will".

Second, you have an error previously in your second sentence by using the word "am" in "If I am", it should be if I were, this is called the subjunctive mood, which is used when expressing a non factual conditional.

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