I'm searching Google for self-doubted, which means the situation where someone is doubting himself/herself. I mean I request a word to fill this blank: He is sometimes very _____ . Is self-doubted appropriate?

Does self-doubted make any sense and is it grammatical? If not, could you please recommend to me another word ending in -ed?

  • You need to put context, especially about failing part. What does he doubt about and fail to do?
    – user24743
    Commented Nov 23, 2015 at 12:25
  • Sorry, I mean I failed to find the word. Commented Nov 23, 2015 at 12:27
  • It entirely depend on context. I would advise you to make a sentence with a blank for "self-X".
    – user24743
    Commented Nov 23, 2015 at 12:55
  • @Rathony I've edited the question description. Commented Nov 23, 2015 at 13:01
  • 2
    I'm glad you got an answer that made sense to you so quickly, but you might want to wait a little while before accepting it so that you attract some more responses. This post on meta explains in more detail.
    – ColleenV
    Commented Nov 23, 2015 at 14:16

1 Answer 1


First of all, you need to be careful when you use compound adjectives such as "X + -ed", "X + -ful", or "X + -ing", etc. It is very confusing but it has to be understood from the verb usage, i.e. "intransitive"/"transitive" or "active"/"passive".

You doubt about yourself, and you are not doubted about yourself. In this case, "Doubt" is an intransitive verb. However, you doubt someone else or things like ability, value, etc. and it becomes a transitive verb. Therefore, you have to use "self-doubting" which means:

Lacking confidence in oneself and one’s abilities; unconfident:

[Oxford Online Dictionary]

The word comes from "self-doubt" which means:

lack of confidence in one's own motives, ability, etc.

[Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionar]

  • You're right, but any word meaning selfdoubting ended with "-ed"? Commented Nov 23, 2015 at 13:24
  • @leoadams Not that I could think of. It is better using he "lacks confidence".
    – user24743
    Commented Nov 23, 2015 at 13:27

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