I'm not been able to make up my mind


I'm not being able to make up my mind?

Which one is the correct sentence? Why is it correct and why is the other one incorrect?

Edit 10/09/2012: What if I'm talking about a present action? Like: "I'm not been able to make up my mind now, so I'll try to decide it later.


Neither is correct. Acceptable alternatives include:

  • I've not been able to make up my mind.
  • I'm not able to make up my mind.

If you expand I'm to I am, the wrongness of your examples becomes clearer.

  • 2
    I would just add a cautionary note that expanding contractions to check whether their usage is correct is not a general rule of English. It just happens to work in many cases, including this one. (For example, it doesn't work with, "He's not as happy as I'm.") – David Schwartz Aug 3 '12 at 22:53
  • @David- He is not as happy as I am, is there something wrong with this? I don't think so. – Noah Aug 3 '12 at 22:59
  • 4
    @Noah: Exactly. There's no rule in English that you can expand the contraction to see how a contraction is misused. That sentence misuses a contraction (contracting a stranded clitic to a weak form is impermissible in English). But if you expand the contraction, rather than making the wrongness clearer, it goes away. – David Schwartz Aug 3 '12 at 23:02

As other people have written before me, neither example is correct and the most likely change to the sentences you provide is: "I have not been able to make up my mind."

The second sentence is incorrect because of the verb you have chosen (to be able) which cannot be used in the continuous form. However, the expression I am not being is a correct form if you need to create a passive sentence in the present continuous tense. For example, you may wish to use it to say "I am not being waited upon properly. I'll complain to the hotel manager!" (I don't think you'll have many opportunities to utter such a sentence, but you never know...)

  • In your example it would be better to say 'I'll complain to the hotel manager!' Using 'with' implies that he is complaining too. – Tony Balmforth Aug 4 '12 at 11:26
  • @TonyBalmforth. You're absolutely right! When I wrote it was 2 am my time and I was sleepy, so I was misled by the different usage of prepositions between Italian and English. – Paola Aug 4 '12 at 14:54

Neither is correct. I have not been able to make up my mind or I've not been able to make up my mind are the two alternatives.


been: is used after have/has and had but being: is used with to be.

i.e. I have been working with XY company for a long time.

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