"Retard" means hinder or slow. "Retarded" means limited or slow in mental development. While it is unfortunately clinically acceptable to say "mental retardation," you should use the more socially acceptable "intellectual disability." Using the words "retard" or "retarded" is hurtful and should not be used in any derogatory context.
I hate both of these words and it breaks my heart in two every time I hear someone use them. I'm not saying that I've never used them before, because yes I have. I had absolutely no idea how hurtful these words could be, until Sophia was born. Do I think that Sophia is "retarded?" ABSOLUTELY NOT! But do I think that other people in this world think that Sophia is "retarded," yes I do. Sophia is a child who is beautiful and loving and who strives each and every day to accomplish new things. She works hard for everything that she has accomplished so far, and continues to work even harder to reach all these goals that are set out for her. That's how I see her, and I know that most of you see her the same way, but there are people out there who see individuals, like Sophia, as a waste of space. That they will never amount to anything, and never deserved the right to be brought into this world and that is why I feel it's up to us to lead by example. Be more conscious of what you say, around your kids, your family, and your friends. Hold yourself responsible for the things that come out of your mouth, I know I have. I understand that most of the time these words are used to describe something stupid or dumb, however, when I hear these words I immediately think to the future when someone may be directing them at Sophia, and that really hurts. These words have become accepted somewhere along the way, but in our world of special needs, it isn't acceptable. In fact, it is hurtful and heart breaking. All I ask of each of you is to be aware of what you're saying and know that words do hurt. If you make a conscious effort to stop using these words, maybe you can influence others to stop using these words too. It's all about RESPECT and ACCEPTANCE of EVERYONE!