I've been surfing the web looking for an alternative to 'want sth bad enough' but I haven't found anything useful.

I've got a dialogue between two characters who are a couple. They're facing difficulties and, even though they're in love, they don't know how they can ever make it work.

I wanted him to say something like:

If we both want this bad enough, we can make it work.

However, I want to avoid the word 'bad'. I have tried "if we both really want this", but I already have enough 'really's around and I was hoping for something more emphatic.

Are there other alternatives that retain the idea of 'wanting something so bad' that you're willing to make all type of sacrifices in order to get to the objective?

PS: I'm adding the single-word-request because there could be a single word that would fit my purpose, even though I don't think it's likely.

In response to the comments: you have made your point loud and clear, so I will reconsider my stance. Nevertheless, just to avoid leaving this dangling without an answer, are there other alternatives?

  • 2
    I think your aversion to the supposed connotations of bad in this context is misplaced. It's quite natural to say you badly need something that's extremely good, and this in no way "taints" the object of your need/desire. Jun 26, 2016 at 19:11
  • 1
    Not to mention the connotations aren't entirely positive. You're being obdurate, stubborn, whatever. Those aren't terms thrown about for noble causes. I also have no issue with "wanting it bad enough."
    – stevesliva
    Jun 27, 2016 at 3:05
  • 1
    You can make it positive "if we both believe in our relationship, we can make this work." If we really want to, we can....", "if we love each other, we can...." etc. "Trust me, together we can work it out" etc..
    – Mari-Lou A
    Jun 27, 2016 at 11:40
  • 2
    You could just remove the "bad" - "if we want this enough" means the same thing. Jun 27, 2016 at 11:48
  • 1
    Think Max is right. You can actually remove 'enough' as well. Just leave a pause after the 'this' for dramatic effect and it will say more than if you filled it with a word. Jun 28, 2016 at 1:52

2 Answers 2


Set our hearts on (doing) something, according to Macmillan Dictionary:

to decide that you want something very much

In your example (I took this from you example sentence, you could replace that by our relationship):

If we both set our hearts on this, we can make it work.

Attribution: "Have Your Heart Set on (doing) Something - definition and Synonyms." Have Your Heart Set on (doing) Something (phrase) Definition and Synonyms | Macmillan Dictionary. Accessed April 28, 2018. https://www.macmillandictionary.com/dictionary/british/have-your-heart-set-on-doing-something#have-your-heart-set-on-doing-something__1.


be hell-bent on TFD

to be very determined to do something

As in:

If we both want this bad enough, we can be hell-bent on finding ways to sork through this.

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