[ dih-strak-tid ]
See synonyms for: distracteddistractedly on Thesaurus.com

  1. having the attention diverted: She tossed several rocks to the far left and slipped past the distracted sentry.

  1. rendered incapable of behaving, reacting, etc., in a normal manner, as by worry, remorse, or the like; irrational; disturbed.

Origin of distracted

First recorded in 1580–90; distract + -ed2

Other words from distracted

  • dis·tract·ed·ly, adverb
  • dis·tract·ed·ness, noun
  • non·dis·tract·ed, adjective
  • non·dis·tract·ed·ly, adverb
  • un·dis·tract·ed, adjective
  • un·dis·tract·ed·ly, adverb
  • un·dis·tract·ed·ness, noun

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use distracted in a sentence

  • But when I asked if we could speak, he frowned and looked away distractedly.

    Buddhist Retreat’s Death Saga | Lizzie Crocker | July 10, 2012 | THE DAILY BEAST
  • Uttering these words, the good lady pointed distractedly to the cupboard, and underwent a convulsion from internal spasms.

  • As she paced distractedly across the room her eye was caught by the letter on the marble mantelshelf.

    The Rake's Progress | Marjorie Bowen
  • Mr. Tallmadge mopped his brow, and looked about distractedly, like one who has lost his thread in a labyrinth.

    The Open Question | Elizabeth Robins
  • Through the glare, many birds, unceremoniously routed from their nests beneath the eaves, flew distractedly.

    Under the Rose | Frederic Stewart Isham
  • Harper wandered distractedly over toward the high wall bench.

    The 4-D Doodler | Graph Waldeyer

British Dictionary definitions for distracted


/ (dɪˈstræktɪd) /

  1. bewildered; confused

  2. mad

Derived forms of distracted

  • distractedly, adverb
  • distractedness, noun

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012