Psychologist sparks heated debate with controversial opinion on returning shopping trolleys

Jun 29, 2024
Her reasoning proved to be unpopular with many social media users. Source: Getty Images.

Angry shoppers are accusing an American psychologist of being “lazy” and labeling her a “Karen” after she explained why she never returns her shopping carts.

Dr Leslie Dobson faced fierce backlash online after uploading a video to TikTok where she outlined her stance. So far, the post has attracted over 12 million views and ignited a passionate debate over trolley etiquette.

Dobson was unapologetic as she explained why returning her shopping cart would endanger her children. She said that leaving her children in her car to return an empty shopping cart could leave them vulnerable to kidnapping or worse.

“I’m not getting my groceries into the car, getting my children into the car and then leaving them in the car to go return the cart,” she said.

“And you can judge me all you want.

“So if you’re going to give me a dirty look, f*** off.”

@drlesliedobson #groceryshopping #shoppingcart #traderjoes #protectourchildren #protectourkids #educational #groceries #singlemom #drleslie ♬ original sound – Dr. Leslie

Her reasoning proved to be unpopular with many social media users, many mothers hit back at the psychologist claiming they were able to return trolleys while out with their children.

“Single mom here! I always parked next to the cart return or as close to it as possible and it was never an issue.. you’re just being lazy,” one viewer commented.

“These comments did not disappoint, my mom returned her shopping cart all the time when she had me and my siblings with her, and I do the same with my kid.”

Other viewers believed that her shopping trolley etiquette reflected poorly on her personality.

“The shopping cart is the ultimate litmus test for whether a person is capable of self-governing. To return the shopping cart is an easy, convenient task,” one person said.

“You deserve the dirty looks for being a Karen. Nobody leaves the kids while returning the cart, you take kids with you, just like when you took thee cart in the first place. Sincerely, a mom.”

Meanwhile, other commentators came to the psychologist’s defence.

“I’ve thought the same thing. Even by myself, walking way down away from my car to the cart corral is dangerous these days. I wouldn’t dare if my children with still little either. I’m with you on this,” one said.

“I do NOT leave my kids in the cart while I load groceries. They go in the car first and the doors get locked. I try to park next to a cart return, but if not, I ask the closest person to take it,” another wrote.

While the debate around Dr Dobson’s stance continues, it appears most Australians do the right thing. A 2022 a survey found that over 80 per cent of participants put their trolley back every time they went shopping.

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