Meredith Told the Doctor It Was Ok – Would She?
Like many, I watched Grey’s Anatomy the other night, only to see Derek die. The show handled it masterfully. It looked like they were teasing his death last week, only to get us to relax when it turned out he was helping people who were injured in an accident. Then, there we are, all relaxed, only to have him die after all. Can we sue Grey’s Anatomy for emotional damage?? Or maybe whiplash? (The answer is no folks, calm down.)
How Realistic Was Meredith’s Reaction?
For much of the show, we saw a very realistic reaction from Dr. Meredith Grey. She was clearly in shock, as anyone would be upon having the police show up at her door. She had to figure out how to manage two young children, while at the same time get to her husband to make a very difficult decision about whether to take him off life support. This all struck me as very normal.
It makes sense for a doctor to have the kind of reaction Meredith had when the other doctor came to her to tell her it was an honor to operate on Derek. After all, he failed. I wonder what she would have said if she knew it took him over an hour to show up? The look she gave him was very Meredith, in many ways.
What about the calm authoritative voice? The aggression with the doctor who came to tell her about her options? That was different, wasn’t it? Even in surgery, we haven’t really seen that Meredith before. I can easily see a doctor behaving that way. Trying to hold it together. Trying to be a doctor. And then, at the last moment, being human. Talking about how her children are lying there sleeping. And cracking just a little bit as she asks for the papers. Elle Pompeo was excellent in this scene, wasn’t she?
What struck me as extremely unlikely is how Meredith dealt with the young doctor, who as far as Meredith knew, had messed up quite badly in failing to order a CT scan. This poor doctor had tried to get a CT scan, but Meredith didn’t know that. And yet, look how kind she is. Here we see Meredith the teacher, not Meredith the grieving widow who has just lost the love of her life.
And this is where I have a problem. I just don’t see anyone, even a doctor, standing there and providing instruction to another doctor, who as far as she knew, apparently violated medical protocol. Who might have played a part in Derek’s death. Even Dr. Grey had to be thinking, what if? She saw the chart. She knew.
Yes, Meredith threw up afterwards, but really, are we to expect she is going to stand there calmly and make this young woman feel better as she is dealing with her own horror and grief? The shock of the loss of her vibrant spouse?
Doctors are human beings. The show simply rang false to me here. I was pulled out of my suspension of disbelief, pulled out of the show, and pulled into my mind not only as a lawyer but as a human being who knows too well the anger and pain people feel when they lose a loved one. Even if they don’t believe the doctor messed up.
I feel that this part of the show went too far.
What do you think?