A mum has divided opinions after revealing she doesn’t return her shopping trolley for a very particular reason.

Forensic psychologist Dr Leslie Dobson’s video has been watched almost 12 million times, with thousands of people sharing their opinion in the comments.

In the viral video she says, “I’m not returning my shopping cart. And you can judge me all you want.

“I’m not getting my groceries into my car, getting my children into the car and then leaving them in the car to go return the cart, so if you’re gonna give me a dirty look, f— off.”

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

It prompted a flood of comments from people saying there’s no excuse for not returning your shopping trolley.

“And this coming from a doctor of psychology, please dissect yourself and tell us about your true character,” one person said.

“Being a single mum has never prevented me from returning a cart. Park close to the cart return. If you can’t, the kids can walk with you. This is what good people do,” commented another.

“I have seen carts roll into parked cars just from the wind pushing them so no matter what, I always try to return them. I don’t want my car banged into, I won’t do it to others inadvertently.”

Leslie followed up with another video, explaining in detail why she refuses to return her shopping trolley while she has her children with her.

“Last year 265 children were abducted in parking lots in America,” she said. “Half of those were sexually assaulted. As a single mum, returning your shopping cart, you are prime for a predator to watch and grab you. “In many states it’s actually illegal to turn your car on and walk away. Many comments said they would turn the car on, leave the air on for the kids and go return the shopping cart. In Los Angeles, in one particular parking lot, that’s at least a 12 minute walk. You could go to jail.”


But it did little to stop the negative comments.

“What about the girl working her part time job at the grocery store that has to go all the way down the parking lot alone to retrieve the cart that YOU left where it didn’t belong?”

“If “EXCUSES” had a name… I have quadruplets take my kids everywhere by myself and have managed to return the cart most of the time if there’s a will there’s a way… but excuses is also an option!”

We have previously asked Mouths of Mums members if they always return their trolley – take a look at the answers and add yours below.

What do you think? Do you always return your shopping trolley? Let us know in the comments below. 

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  • I put my trolley in the safest position close to my car after unloading. I make sure it’s leaning on something so it doesn’t roll, I don’t go all the way to the trolley bay. On the brighter side, if everyone put their trolleys in the bay, those people whose job is to find and gather the trolleys may not have a job.


  • Personally, l do the same. With a disabled toddler, it just wont be an option until he is older.


  • You don’t have to leave your kids alone, you can take them with them. When you feel that that is not an option you can park your car closer to the trolley bay


  • In Sydney I thought it was illegal to leave children alone in a car.
    As a person with a disabiilty, we park in the disabled spots and I am always grateful for the people who leave the trolley between the disabled parking spots as with challenges with mobility I can independently get out of the car and use the trolley to help me maintain balance.
    Numerous times I have been abused by people who call me lazy, thoughtless and just plain selfish – pedantism without insight I find offensive and these people just assume they know what is best. If they had to walk in my shoes and face the overwhelming thoughtlessness and selfishness for sheer convenience I imagine that their opinion may be different. I applaud her for prioritising her children’s safety.


  • I agree that if it’s a long walk, I wouldn’t be leaving my kids alone.


  • I do my groceries online so I never have this


  • I never return a trolley I love to see the happiness when people get a free trolley and I am glad to give some young people a job collecting them


  • I have 3 kids and sometime more in the car with me shopping and I always took the trolley back with the last child with me in the trolley. As the kids got older and they were able to be trusted to stay in the car for a quick minute whilst I put the trolley back, We are fortunate at the end of every car space row at both ends we have trolley bays. Now and then I offer to take the trolley back for Mum’s and the elderly. It is just respecting the Shopping Center rules and people and it doesn’t take more than a minute out of your day!


  • I have 4 kids and I’ve always returned my shopping cart. Its so frustrating when you cant get a park because theyre filled with trolleys or you cant get down a walkway with a pram because of trolleys that haven’t been put away and imagine if you were in a wheelchair…… it literally takes 30 seconds. Most of the time there’s a trolley return within site of the car ( and i lock the car doors as well) and if not the kids come with me..


  • This is the one thing I dislike at the shopping centres are dumped trollies that are only feet from the trolley bays! Even witness a young couple, dump their trolley in a walk way but there was a trolley bay literally two bays up from where their car was parked! Even my 11yo couldn’t believe it and he even walked our trolley to that same bay which was a tad further. My 5yo even said that is lazy.
    I will admit that sometimes trolley bays are in odd spots and miles apart but always the trick is, park close to one.
    When my kids were younger, they would stay in the trolley until I was done, return the trolley back or if it was raining, I popped em in the car and locked it while i walked a few feet to return the trolley.
    Not so hard. There is no excuse. Just pure laziness.


  • Having kids is no excuse. If you’re that worried, lock the car. It’s usually only a few metres away. If it’s not, take your kids with you. I almost always return mine.


  • Plain lazy and rude.


  • I have 2 toddlers and I always return my shopping cart. I do think however it should be easier to do. If I park in a pram spot, it’s so far away from the trolley bay


  • Yes I do and think it’s normal courtesy to do so.

    • It is definitely the right thing to do and loose trolleys can be potential hazards in car parks.

      • Exactly, I actually think it’s an anti-social thing not to return them


  • I always return trolleys to the bays – it is common courtesy. If I had the children with me when I shopped, then they walked with me to return the trolley and hopefully it taught them the right thing to do by example at the same time.


  • 99.9% of the time I return my shopping trolley. I will walk the extra distance to do so. I usually don’t take the shopping trolley back when my husband picks me up near the bus stop as there is only a 2 minute drop off/pick up zone and the trolley bay isn’t close to it


  • I have four kids and after putting all groceries in my van, I would take them with me to return the trolley to the closet trolley bay.
    Don’t give me that absolute drool about not leaving them alone in a vehicle to return a trolley, just take them with you like all the other parents manage to do that have more kids than you do. You’re the LAZIEST most entitled person EVER!


  • So many people leave trolleys everywhere, it’s terrible. I always make time to return it, there are usually so many trolley return areas. It’s just laziness.


  • It’s just an excuse! The number of times I’ve seen those trolleys hitting cars and people in parking lots is insane. Park closer to the trolley bay or put your groceries in your car, take baby with you and leave your trolley in its bay and then return to your car. It’s really not that difficult


  • I dont understand her reasoning. No one is asking her to leave the car running with children unattended. Lock the children in the car whilst you return a trolley or take them with you if parking close isnt an option. Its the right thing to do instead of leaving it everywhere to hit cars


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