‘Grey’s Anatomy’: Is It Sexist to Hate Meredith and DeLuca Together?

For 16 years, the medical drama Grey’s Anatomy has shown many romances that come and go, and the viewers have always had strong feelings about who should be with whom.

Lately, one of the couples under scrutiny is Meredith Grey and Andrew DeLuca. Many fans seem to dislike them as a couple. Do they have a point, or are they just being sexist?

Meredith and DeLuca’s love story

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For many viewers, Meredith’s one true love will always be Derek Shepherd. So according to The Things, when he died in Season 11, and DeLuca arrived at the end of the season, people were just not ready to see Meredith with him or anyone else. 

Fortunately, they didn’t have to watch her and DeLuca get involved just yet. They both spent the next five years failing to form lasting relationships with anyone they dated. But at the end of Season 14, all that changed. DeLuca got drunk at a wedding and impulsively kissed Meredith. 

The pair have been together for a few years now, but fans still don’t seem to be able to fully accept them as a couple. What’s holding them back?

Why don’t people like them together?

GIACOMO GIANNIOTTI, ELLEN POMPEO
GIACOMO GIANNIOTTI, ELLEN POMPEO | Gilles Mingasson/ABC via Getty Images

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According to Digital Spy, some fans are still strongly opposed to DeLuca being Meredith’s love interest. Is it just because he’s not Derek? While that may always be a barrier, some think that the reason is shallower than that. 

Although the characters’ ages aren’t clearly stated on the show, it’s generally understood that Meredith is about 40, while DeLuca is roughly 29. For some fans, that age difference of about ten years just doesn’t feel right. However, others point out that Derek was older than Meredith, and no one objected to their age difference. 

Some fans think the objections are sexist

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In a post on Reddit, one viewer started the conversation with all the reasons they hate the controversial couple’s relationship. 

“i just find their relationship super uncomfortable because i can’t get over seeing mer as so much older and wiser than him even tho the age gap probably isn’t that weird the relationship feels SUPER weird to me,” the original poster insisted, saying that it feels as though they are mother and son.

Another person pointed out that the age difference didn’t seem to be a problem before. “Did you feel that uncomfortable with the age difference when she was with Derek? Do you think he should have been a fatherly figure?”

Some claimed that it wasn’t about age, but maturity. “For whatever reason, i cannot get past an older woman in a relationship. It’s probably because women mature faster than men and/or are ready for kids and marriage earlier than men. So it makes sense to me when the man is older. She seemed like a mom to deluca to me.”

But other fans were quick to object, with one person saying bluntly “it’s sexism. As soon as you say a relationship can be one way and it’s acceptable, but not acceptable with the genders reversed it’s sexism.”

Others agreed, saying, “if your okay with Derek being older and not okay with Mer being older, it’s sexist.”

The creators of the show are very aware of people’s discomfort with Meredith dating a younger man. And it seems that they’re happy to push that boundary. 

“All the time on television you see older men with younger women and it is so common that it isn’t even a thing that people notice,” showrunner Krista Vernoff once said. “It was not a conversation that Derek was so much older than Meredith. It was just that he was the senior surgeon. The age difference wasn’t a conversation. I find it delightful to have the opportunity to flip that script. And when people buck against their age difference, my response is to say, ‘So? Let’s not fall into weird stereotypes.’ People are people—and people fall in love.”