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10 Times the show Greys Anatomy shed some light on important topics.

by Tabitha Vanderver about a year ago in tv
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Grey's anatomy is a wildly popular show that has been on since 2005. I will admit to having watched all seasons; it is addicting once you get into it. The show is known for mainly being medically accurate and, of course, the drama that happens every episode, you know, McDreamy vs. McSteamy. However, the show's producer, Shonda Rhimes, Now Krista Vernoff, makes sure that the show sheds light on the more serious topics that get the fans thinking and talking. Here are ten times that Grey's Anatomy has shed light on serious topics.

1. Mental health – in season 16, Jo, a woman who was abandoned by her mom when she was five days old, had a very rough childhood living in her car as a teen and then was in an abusive relationship which she got out of, had left to find her mom. Once she discovered her mom, her mom revealed that she was raped by her dad and got pregnant, and her mom wanted nothing to do with her because she looked too much like her dad. This made Jo, understandably, spiral into depression, not going to work, just staying in bed; it was the straw that broke the camel's back. Eventually, with the help of her husband and friends, she checked herself into a mental health institute and took steps to get better.

2. Shootings – it is no secret that the U.S. has had multiple shootings in public places, and Grey's anatomy wanted to tackle that issue by shedding light on it. The husband of a patient who died came to the hospital with a plan to hurt whoever got in his way and kill the doctors who operated on his wife. He ended up killing himself, which can also double as mental health.

3. PTSD: Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is shown on the show in many ways. An Army trauma surgeon, Owen Hunt, becomes an employee at the hospital after being recently honorably discharged from Iraq; he then has PTSD and becomes a danger to his girlfriend and has trouble sleeping. After his girlfriend leaves him, he decides to get better and sees a therapist. He struggles with his PTSD throughout the seasons. The show constantly shows veterans struggling because it is no better for veterans in the real world. PTSD can also happen from other traumatic incidents other than war. Later in the seasons, when the shooting happens, Cristina Yang shows signs of PTSD from having a gun pointed at her while she was trying to save Derek Shepherd from the gunshot, and it took her a while to recover, she quit being a surgeon for a while because she feared being in an OR.

4. The COVID 19 pandemic – COVID has impacted everyone's life in one way or another; you either know someone who has suffered, or you have suffered from the virus. Greys Anatomy wanted their current season, season 17, to be solely based on COVID and how it has affected every one's life, how it has taken a toll on health care workers. Throughout the season, Meredith Grey is suffering from COVID, has to be on a ventilator. The season shows a significant loss. In one of the episodes, at the end of the episode, it shows everyone's name who had their life taken because of the virus.

5. Alzheimer's – at the start of the show, it is seen that Meredith's mom, Ellis Grey, has early-onset Alzheimer's, and throughout the show, shows the struggle and strain it puts on the patient and their family members.

6. Domestic abuse – going back to Jo. Before she came to the hospital to work, she was married to a very well-known doctor who was abusive to her, and she eventually left him. She changed her name so he could not find her and then lived in constant fear, fear of him finding her, which is not uncommon in domestic abuse situations in the real world. She missed out on awards and putting her name and picture on medical journals because of the fear of him finding her. Later, she fell in love with a fantastic guy and decided not to let fear control her life and sent her abusive ex-husband divorce papers, but he did not respond well, he came after her, but luckily, she had friends to help her.

7. OCD – Dr. Bailey, in the 10th season, shows signs of OCD and has a hard time accepting it and has a hard time accepting she needs help. She shuts out everyone who cares for her until it gets to a point where it affects her job, and her supervisor makes her get help. The way the show portrayed this was very good.

8. Sexual abuse – let me start by saying sexual abuse is NOT and will NEVER be okay, and the show is trying to spread awareness about that and how most women are silenced because of what they wear or how they act. Jo and Teddy, both surgeons, had helped this woman who was sexually assaulted by being there for her, having only girl doctors in the room, reassuring her that it is okay and that it wasn't her fault and that if she chooses to, she can record the evidence and have it stay in the hospital until/ if she feels like pressing charges, she then accepts that. Once she's going to surgery for her injuries, Jo and Teddy line the hallways up with women so that she doesn't see any man, which helped with her anxiety. She goes to the police and tells them about her experience and tells them about the stranger who hurt her, with her husband, who was out of town at work at the time, by her side, being as supportive as he can be. This is such a power episode. I must recommend people watch it; they should watch all the episodes on this list, but this one in general.

9. Abortion – abortion is a very controversial topic in life, whether abortion is morally and ethically okay. Cristina yang becomes pregnant; she stands firm never to have kids and decided to exercise her right as a woman and get an abortion. Her husband, Owen, was not happy about it and completely berated her for it. The show then constantly brings up the topic because it is so controversial and such a powerful topic.

10. Last but certainly not least, addiction – addiction comes in many forms, drugs, alcohol, hoarding, you name it but, on the show, the most seen addictions are drugs and alcohol. Richard Webber, chief of surgery, constantly struggles with alcoholism. He is in A.A. but ends up falling off the wagon and loses his job but was told that he could regain his position if he goes to rehab. Throughout the show, it shows him struggling with it. Another surgeon, Amelia Shepherd, Derek Shepherd's sister, struggles with drugs. She hit rock bottom and gotten clean. She saw her dad get shot and killed and never really coped with that, so she eventually turned to drugs. She goes to meetings and talks about the struggles she endures.

Grey's anatomy is so much more than a drama, medical show. It brings difficult situations to light and talks about spreading awareness and getting people talking about these topics. It is refreshing to have a serious show when it needs to be, and I highly recommend the show.


About the author

Tabitha Vanderver

Just an aspiring writer.

Trying to shed light on serious topics.

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