Meredith Grey has had more than her fair share of heartbreak on Grey’s Anatomy, so it makes sense that, when Meredith jumped into bed (or, uh, the back seat) with new guy Nathan Riggs at the end of Season 12, fans were skeptical. Is Meredith really ready to move on from Derek’s death? Should she be? Now, slut-shaming aside (seriously, people, it’s been years since Derek’s death), I still don’t think it’s a good idea for Meredith and Nathan to start another epic Grey’s romance.
To be fair, Meredith’s romantic relationship with Nathan is still in the early stages. They’ve only hooked up once (or four times in one night, if you want to take Riggs’ word for it), and neither one seems eager to enter into a full-on relationship. However, I think it’s fair to say that Meredith and Nathan will be hooking up again… possibly multiple times. Actor Martin Henderson, who plays Nathan Riggs on the show, confirmed as much in an interview with TV Line. Nathan and Meredith, he said, understand each other because of their “shared loss,” adding that their similar experiences “may be fertile ground for them to actually have a relationship with some meaning.”
Now, I like Nathan — he’s charming but flawed, not too much of a player and super nice to look at — but I’m not so sure he’s the next love of Meredith’s life. What I am sure of is that I don’t want him to be. And I especially don’t want to see these two become all lovey-dovey next season. Let me be clear: My objection to the Mer-Riggs union has absolutely nothing to do with Derek or the belief that Meredith should still be in mourning. If Meredith wants to fall in love, I am all for it. What I’m not excited about is the idea of having to watch it. Look, Grey’s Anatomy is, essentially, 12 seasons of dramatic romance, so I get that fans expect every new character to fall in love with at least two other doctors at Grey Sloan Memorial. But maybe it’s time to take Meredith off the love roller coaster for a bit and remember that not everyone who has sex falls in love with each other.
Nathan and Meredith are fun to watch together because they’re friends — flirty friends, yes, but friends nonetheless. It’s part of their attraction and part of what makes us want to see them hook up. He brings a bit of lightheartedness to Meredith’s life that she more than deserves as a single mother of three. “Nathan is irreverent and kind of calls Meredith on her shit, and that might be really good for her, because he doesn’t take [things] all that seriously,” Henderson told TV Line. If Nathan and Meredith were to fall in love, the spontaneous aspect of their relationship would probably disappear and everything would become serious. That’s just something I don’t want to have to care about, let alone sit through.
There’s also the fact that any Nathan-Meredith love story would eventually have to deal with the fact that Maggie also has a crush on Riggs. Correct me if I’m wrong (I’m not), but sisters don’t normally like to share men, which means that should Meredith and Riggs get closer, drama’s on its way. (On a personal note, as one of three sisters, if Shonda Rhimes makes me sit through a Maggie-Meredith-Riggs love triangle, I might never recover.)
I just want Meredith to enjoy her new friends-with-benefits relationship and leave all the dramatics and doom and gloom to Alex and Jo or Owen and Amelia; I think they can handle it for a season or two. Is that too much to ask?