Mom reveals she doesn't return her shopping cart, and receives the wrath of social media

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By James Kay

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A mother has been met with a wave of backlash after revealing that she doesn't return her shopping cart, which some say is an important personality test.

Getting a shopping cart isn't anything exciting and presumably isn't something that most of us think twice about.

GettyImages-151140236.jpgWhat you do with your cart after shopping could say a lot about your character. Credit: Tadas Kazakevicius Copyrigted/Getty

But what I want you to do right now is stop and think about whether you return the cart to where you got it from or leave it in the parking lot and let someone else deal with it.

If it's the latter, then it's best not to be too vocal about it online because people will come for you, as one mom found out.

“I’m not returning my shopping cart,” declared Leslie Dobson, a married mother of two and psychologist, in a defiant TikTok video that has garnered over 11 million views. “You can judge me all you want.”



Dobson explained her stance further, saying: “I’m not getting my groceries into my car, getting my children into the car and leaving them in the car to go return the cart. So if you’re gonna give me a dirty look… F*** off.”

Dobson was met with quite a few angry viewers.

One person said: "One thing I’ve noticed after moving to America recently is that shopping cart return stations are all over the parking lot so never really more than 20 seconds away and you still can’t be bothered?"

A second added: "If you can get the cart, you can return the cart."

A third added: "The shopping cart theory states that the decision to return a shopping cart to its designated spot after use is a litmus test of a person's moral character and capacity for self-governance."

Another added: "Well if you want to be that awful person, so be it! You can be whatever you want!"

But what is this shopping cart theory?

GettyImages-1340760517.jpgDo you return your shopping cart? Credit: Aleksandr Zubkov/Getty

Well, that third comment hit the nail on the head as some people use it as an important personality test.

The Columbia Star states: "The Shopping Cart Theory states whether a person places their cart back into the rack rather than leaving it wherever they please determines the goodness of that person."

The theory, as outlined by Medium, is as follows: "To return the shopping cart is an easy, convenient task and one which we all recognize as correct, the appropriate thing to do.

"To return the shopping cart is objectively right. There are no situations other than dire emergencies in which a person is not able to return their cart. Simultaneously, it is not illegal to abandon your shopping cart.

"Therefore the shopping cart presents itself as the apex example of whether a person will do what is right without being forced to do it."

Therefore, people use this theory as a litmus test to see whether someone is a good person, with the ability to do the right thing without anyone having to tell them to do it.

Despite the backlash, research commissioned by Scientific American suggests that not returning shopping carts doesn’t necessarily indicate bad character, it could just be someone who is a bit more set in their ways.

“People who never return their carts believe it’s someone else’s job or the supermarket’s responsibility, and show little regard for where the carts are left,” noted the authors of a 2017 report.

GettyImages-1283789887.jpgReturning your cart could mean that you are a good person. Credit: Yifei Fang/Getty

Experts in the study highlighted the competing priorities that might influence such behavior, including staying dry, keeping an eye on children, or simply wanting to get home quickly.

Amidst the controversy, Dobson remains steadfast.

“I want women to feel empowered to trust their intuition if they feel unsafe, and ignore judgment,” she wrote in response to critics. “Risk isn’t worth it and our lives are precious."

What are your thoughts?

Featured image credit: Aleksandr Zubkov/Getty

Mom reveals she doesn't return her shopping cart, and receives the wrath of social media

vt-author-image

By James Kay

Article saved!Article saved!

A mother has been met with a wave of backlash after revealing that she doesn't return her shopping cart, which some say is an important personality test.

Getting a shopping cart isn't anything exciting and presumably isn't something that most of us think twice about.

GettyImages-151140236.jpgWhat you do with your cart after shopping could say a lot about your character. Credit: Tadas Kazakevicius Copyrigted/Getty

But what I want you to do right now is stop and think about whether you return the cart to where you got it from or leave it in the parking lot and let someone else deal with it.

If it's the latter, then it's best not to be too vocal about it online because people will come for you, as one mom found out.

“I’m not returning my shopping cart,” declared Leslie Dobson, a married mother of two and psychologist, in a defiant TikTok video that has garnered over 11 million views. “You can judge me all you want.”



Dobson explained her stance further, saying: “I’m not getting my groceries into my car, getting my children into the car and leaving them in the car to go return the cart. So if you’re gonna give me a dirty look… F*** off.”

Dobson was met with quite a few angry viewers.

One person said: "One thing I’ve noticed after moving to America recently is that shopping cart return stations are all over the parking lot so never really more than 20 seconds away and you still can’t be bothered?"

A second added: "If you can get the cart, you can return the cart."

A third added: "The shopping cart theory states that the decision to return a shopping cart to its designated spot after use is a litmus test of a person's moral character and capacity for self-governance."

Another added: "Well if you want to be that awful person, so be it! You can be whatever you want!"

But what is this shopping cart theory?

GettyImages-1340760517.jpgDo you return your shopping cart? Credit: Aleksandr Zubkov/Getty

Well, that third comment hit the nail on the head as some people use it as an important personality test.

The Columbia Star states: "The Shopping Cart Theory states whether a person places their cart back into the rack rather than leaving it wherever they please determines the goodness of that person."

The theory, as outlined by Medium, is as follows: "To return the shopping cart is an easy, convenient task and one which we all recognize as correct, the appropriate thing to do.

"To return the shopping cart is objectively right. There are no situations other than dire emergencies in which a person is not able to return their cart. Simultaneously, it is not illegal to abandon your shopping cart.

"Therefore the shopping cart presents itself as the apex example of whether a person will do what is right without being forced to do it."

Therefore, people use this theory as a litmus test to see whether someone is a good person, with the ability to do the right thing without anyone having to tell them to do it.

Despite the backlash, research commissioned by Scientific American suggests that not returning shopping carts doesn’t necessarily indicate bad character, it could just be someone who is a bit more set in their ways.

“People who never return their carts believe it’s someone else’s job or the supermarket’s responsibility, and show little regard for where the carts are left,” noted the authors of a 2017 report.

GettyImages-1283789887.jpgReturning your cart could mean that you are a good person. Credit: Yifei Fang/Getty

Experts in the study highlighted the competing priorities that might influence such behavior, including staying dry, keeping an eye on children, or simply wanting to get home quickly.

Amidst the controversy, Dobson remains steadfast.

“I want women to feel empowered to trust their intuition if they feel unsafe, and ignore judgment,” she wrote in response to critics. “Risk isn’t worth it and our lives are precious."

What are your thoughts?

Featured image credit: Aleksandr Zubkov/Getty