Definition of differently abled in English:

differently abled

Pronunciation /ˈdif(ə)rəntlē ˈˌābld/ /ˈdɪf(ə)rəntli ˈˌeɪbld/ /ˈdifərntlē ˈˌābld/ /ˈdɪfərntli ˈˌeɪbld/

Translate differently abled into Spanish


North American
  • Disabled.

    ‘we are not disabled, we are differently abled’
    • ‘the oppression of the differently abled’
    • ‘Still, nobody expected creativity and talent to flow in a cultural festival organised exclusively for the differently abled by the District Disabled Rehabilitation Office to celebrate the World Disabled Day.’
    • ‘And the gap between what constitutes being disabled, or differently abled, is artificially narrowed by the week.’
    • ‘And yes, when opportunities are provided, one gets to realise why the disabled children should be called differently abled.’
    • ‘Will you expand to include differently abled children?’
    • ‘Categories for the shorter run are 12 and under; 13-17 years; 18-40; 40 and older; 50 and older and differently abled.’
    • ‘We have to provide a barrier-free environment for the differently abled.’
    • ‘So let's talk about them, the differently abled.’
    • ‘The differently abled singers cannot see in the physical sense, but they demonstrated that they have a vision to reach out to those looking for support from community.’
    • ‘A ramp and a wheel-chair have been provided for the physically differently abled to enter the store as well as use the bathroom set up adjacent to the store.’
    • ‘About 800 differently abled persons took part in the events.’
    • ‘It was not a marketing gimmick but an honest attempt at introducing to young users products made by differently abled people.’
    • ‘Several differently abled children, who took part in the painting competition, were given away awards on the occasion.’
    • ‘Most of the sketches of the differently abled centred round the themes of national integration and religious harmony.’
    • ‘Christmas dawned bright and sunny, promising loads of fun for children especially for the differently abled.’
    • ‘It spares not rich nor poor, black nor white, male nor female, able-bodied nor differently abled.’
    • ‘But, this sale was different, for it was aimed at helping differently abled persons.’
    • ‘Needless to say, the money collected as part of the event would be spent for the welfare of the differently abled.’
    • ‘The differently abled are God's most coveted children and they should not be considered a burden.’
    • ‘Monday night is the traditional wheelchair night when all differently abled are guests at the club.’
    • ‘What kind of message is that to our children about the plight of the differently abled?’
    having a disability, wheelchair-using, paralysed, paraplegic, quadriplegic, tetraplegic, monoplegic


Differently abled was first proposed (in the 1980s) as an alternative to disabled, handicapped, etc., on the grounds that it gave a more positive message and so avoided discrimination toward people with disabilities. The term has gained little currency, however, and can seem overeuphemistic and condescending. The accepted term in general use is still disabled