The title is relatively self-explanatory. For example, I have been introduced to something that I want but only a few people will get one (e.g. winning the lottery, finding a four leaf clover, or getting a certain job).

What word or phrase succinctly describes what you feel in that moment?

Edit: to clarify, there may be a chance that you'll get the thing you want, it might require a lot of luck or hard work, etc., but the idea is that you don't know. Like a mix of serendipity, despair, and determination.

  • On the basis that "benefit by happenstance, by birth, unsought-for" and "someone indirectly helping you" are much the same thing, maybe this is a duplicate of What English word can be used to describe someone indirectly helping you? (where the accepted answer is serendipity). Commented May 24, 2015 at 18:32
  • @FumbleFingers: I think the OP is asking for the feeling when you know you can't get it, rather that when you actually do get it.
    – Tushar Raj
    Commented May 24, 2015 at 18:34
  • 1
    @A.Ellett: Why isn't anyone reading the question? How can you be elated on finding out you may never get what you dearly want?
    – Tushar Raj
    Commented May 24, 2015 at 18:49
  • @Tushar: oic. You're quite right. I read discover and have been introduced to as NNS for find, get, experience. The request for a name of the reaction strikes me as completely a matter of opinion, depending on what particular feelings any given speaker might have (always allowing for the fact that emotional states are at best loosely labeled). I might be wistful, for example. But that's just me. Commented May 24, 2015 at 18:49
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    @Hugh: That might end up focusing on how "trivial" the prize is, in the grand scheme of things (being being such a fragile, ephemeral, and meaningless state). In which case instead of such a long name/title, the reaction might best be summed up as Meh Commented May 24, 2015 at 19:33

2 Answers 2


You realize it is out of reach and you feel disenchanted.

Out of reach or beyond reach

meaning “unattainable”; for example, This plan is out of reach for most subscribers, or His explanation is beyond my reach.


to rid of or free from enchantment, illusion, credulity, etc.; disillusion: The harshness of everyday reality disenchanted him of his idealistic hopes.

  • The OP is asking for phrases that describe the feeling when you realize something is unattainable, not synonyms for the unattainable object itself.
    – Tushar Raj
    Commented May 24, 2015 at 18:46
  • added disenchanted
    – Bookeater
    Commented May 24, 2015 at 19:01

You are assuming that we all get the same feeling when that happens.

For some, it could be disappointing, or even humbling

Cause (someone) to feel less important or proud:

When I finally accepted that my childhood dream of becoming a soccer player would never be realized, it was a humbling experience for me.

But then again, some might react like Tyler Durden did:

We've all been raised on television to believe that one day we'd all be millionaires, and movie gods, and rock stars. But we won't. And we're slowly learning that fact. And we're very, very pissed off.

EDIT: After reading your edit, I have to admit I can't quite name that particular feelings cocktail. Yet.

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