mental retardation was a medical diagnostic term used throughout the 1900s to refer to those with intellectual delay but ended up becoming a slur over time. mental retardation was based on IQ, which included mild (IQ between 50-70), moderate (IQ between 35-55), severe (IQ between 20-40), and profound (IQ below 20 or 25). the r slur is not about neurodivergency but instead about intellectual delay. The term "mental retardation" was changed to "intellectual disability" in 2010 by obama. “significantly sub-average general intellectual functioning with deficits in adaptive functioning initially manifested during the developmental period; i.e., the evidence demonstrates or supports onset of the impairment before age 22” says the SSA (social security administration). mental retardation does apply to people who have trouble with adaptive functioning ("adaptive behavior refers to behavior that enables a person to get along in their environment with greatest success and least conflict with others.") but it must be along side an intellectual disability, which is why not all neurodivergents may reclaim it.

so who can reclaim the r slur?
the r slur may only be reclaimed by those who have intellectual disabilities. this includes people with
down syndromeautismcerebral palsyfragile x syndromeprader-willi syndrome (PWS)fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD)


dyslexia is not mental retardation because dyslexia does not affect IQ and any mental retardation in someone with dyslexia comes from something else.

"there are many misconceptions about dyslexic children. they are believed to be slow learners, mentally retarded, slow in comprehension, emotionally disturbed and totally unfit for learning. this surmise is not only popular, but also wrong. dyslexics have a problem only in reading, writing, spelling and sometimes arithmetic, but not in thinking". "dyslexia is not related to low intelligence. dyslexia is a unique mindset that is often gifted and productive but learns differently than other minds. in fact, some of the most brilliant minds of our time have been known to have dyslexia: albert einstein, alexander graham bell, thomas edison, winston churchill, benjamin franklin, wolfgang amadeus mozart, and john lennon, to mention only a few." - https://athome.readinghorizons.com

"it is not due to mental retardation, brain damage, or a lack of intelligence. the causes of dyslexia vary with the type. in primary dyslexia, much research focuses on the hereditary factors. researchers have recently identified specific genes identified as possibly contributing to the signs and symptoms of dyslexia." - www.medicinenet.com


adhd is not mental retardation, one thing that many professionals say is that adhd is a mental illness rather than a disability, sources say different things on this. while that is up for debate it is true that it is not a learning disability. adhd is not a learning disability because not everyone with adhd does experience intellectual delay, thats not what adhd is. adhd does go hand in hand with lots of disabilities that are mental retardation, autism for example, which causes lots of people to be confused on if adhd is an intellectual disability or not. adhd is not included in the "specific learning disabilities" but rather "other health impaired". it is proven for adhd to often co-exist with intellectual disorders, but it is not one itself.

"attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a common condition in children with mental retardation (MR), with a prevalence rate of between 4 and 15%. It is therefore necessary to examine the epidemiological characteristics of neurodevelopmental disorders in patients with MR, evaluate diagnostic protocols and especially update the pharmacological treatment of ADHD in children with MR". "ADHD is more frequent in patients with MR than in the general population. the diagnostic methodology is usually the same as that used in patients without MR. stimulation treatment is the most specifically indicated for the treatment of attentional and behavioural problems in these children." - pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov

"although ADHD is not considered a learning disability, research indicates that from 30-50 percent of children with ADHD also have a specific learning disability, and that the two conditions can interact to make learning extremely challenging". "ADHD is not considered to be a learning disability. it can be determined to be a disability under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), making a student eligible to receive special education services. however, ADHD falls under the category “Other Health Impaired” and not under “Specific Learning Disabilities.” individuals with ADHD can also qualify for accommodations under the ADA and Section 504 if their ADHD impacts a major life function such as learning." - ldaamerica.org

"attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is not a learning disability; however, it does make learning difficult. for example, it is hard to learn when you struggle to focus on what your teacher is saying or when you can't seem to be able to sit down and pay attention to a book. you can have both." - verywellmind.com


tourettes are sometimes called an intellectual disability the same way adhd and dyslexia are, but this is not true. tourettes alone do not affect people intellectually, but more times than not people with tourettes syndrome also have learning disabilities.

"individuals with TS have a normal life expectancy. TS does not impair intelligence. although tic symptoms tend to decrease with age, it is possible that neurobehavioral disorders such as ADHD, OCD, depression, generalized anxiety, panic attacks, and mood swings can persist and cause impairment in adult life." - www.ninds.nih.gov

onto this carrd i would like to add that i have autism and adhd. i have been looking into this almost all year and i have spent hours researching. the the r slur is very harmful and i am tired of being yelled at for things relating to this slur, please read and understand why you may not be able to reclaim it. reclaiming slurs is not fun, you should not be super upset that you cant say a slur, thats a you thing to work on. i would also like to add that being called a slur does NOT mean you can reclaim it. it does not matter if you (as someone without an intellectual disability) have been called the r slur or not, the word was never about you in the first place and therefore cannot be reclaimed by you.