Developmental disabilities are chronic disabilities that are attributable to mental or physical impairments apparent before the age of 22. These disabilities tend to be life-long and result in substantial functional limitations in major life activities such as self-care, receptive and expressive language, learning, mobility, self-direction, capacity for independent living and economic self-sufficiency.
However, this definition does not begin to define the abilities and lives of people with disabilities. People with disabilities are also mothers, fathers, brothers and sisters. They laugh and cry, go to school, hold jobs, pay taxes, play sports, get married and have children. People with developmental disabilities are poets and playwrights, business leaders and professionals, athletes and advocates. They, like everyone else, are complex individuals with hopes, dreams and special challenges