A recent episode of Grey’s Anatomy had me chuckling. In it, Meredith’s stuck in a typically trite love triangle between Derek, a married man who routinely broke her heart, and Fin, a vet who obviously adored her and forgave an indiscretion with Derek. (Why she felt she needed to make a choice was beyond me, but that’s another post.) She decided to help her decide, she’s going to date both of them.
Derek and Fin immediately see this as a competition – both telling the other they’re not walking away. They attempt to undermine one another and sabotage each other’s dates.
At one point Meredith, fed up with having her dates crashed and Derek and Fin getting into staring competitions, she tells them ‘dating is supposed to be about flowers and groping and looking into each other’s eyes. You guys are looking at each other!’
And that’s what I found so amusing. She set them up in direct competition with one another, and what did she expect? That they wouldn’t view her as a prize to be won? Derek and Fin’s battle of wills came across to me as two men who want the same object, not as two men who want to do the right thing by a woman they care about. Meredith’s comment about them looking at each other, not her, was right on the money. It wasn’t about her, it was about beating another guy.
Unfortunately, I doubt she saw it that way, and I doubt the writers, or the majority of the viewers, saw it that way. Love triangles are always written like I’m meant to find it romantic that a woman can’t choose a man, and that the men involved are going to great lengths to prove themselves. I mean, how awesome is it when you’re so amazingly desireable that men will compete for you?
Yeah, right. All I ever see are two men competing with one another for a prize, and that is definitely not romantic. Or respectful, for that matter. And that’s not something I want in my life, nor can I understand why anyone else would want it.