7 Most Heartbreaking 'Grey's Anatomy' Breakups (PHOTOS)

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Nathan Riggs & Meredith Grey

Nathan and Meredith didn’t have a huge love story, but their relationship was important. Not only was he the first person Meredith seriously dated following Derek’s death, he was also her first breakup post-Derek. Though Meredith liked Nathan, she knew how much he loved Megan and that they needed to be together. She seemed OK with the split, but it was still hard to watch.


Derek Shepherd & Addison Montgomery

Call us crazy, but Derek and Addison’s breakup was tough. Though Derek was always meant to be with Meredith, he did have something special with Addison. Addison wanted so desperately to be loved by Derek the way he loved Meredith, but it was never in the cards for them. While we were happy to see MerDer finally happen, we’re sad it was at the expense of Addison.


Mark Sloan & Lexie Grey

This breakup really shook us to the core. Sure, Lexie and Mark were total opposites and from completely different worlds, but they worked on so many levels. Lexie brought out Mark’s sensitive side, while Mark made Lexie a little more adventurous and free-spirited. Despite their age gap, these two were always meant to end up together.


Jackson Avery & April Kepner

Jackson and April really put us through a lot over the course of their relationship — or lack thereof. These two were always going back and forth with one another, but they really had a connection that was unlike anyone else’s. Not to mention, April literally ran away from her wedding in order to be with Jackson. Though they didn’t work out in the end, we like to think they’re co-parenting like pros and still getting along as friends.


Preston Burke & Cristina Yang

Preston leaving Cristina at the altar has to be one of the most devastating things to ever happen on Grey’s Anatomy. Cristina and Burke didn’t necessarily have the best relationship ever, but they loved each other deeply and seemed ready to commit to one another. It was even more heartbreaking because it took a lot for Cristina to set aside her professional dreams for love.


Alex Karev & Izzie Stevens

We love Alex with Jo these days, but we’ll never get over his breakup from Izzie. Izzie was the woman who changed Alex from just a jerk into a jerk with a heart of gold. She made him a better person and shows the world he’s a good guy. That’s why it was so sad to see them split, especially after Alex stood by her side when she had cancer.


Callie Torres & Arizona Robbins

Honestly, we’ll probably never get over this breakup. Callie and Arizona were always perfect for each other. They supported each other through the good times and the bad times, like after Arizona tragically lost her leg in the plane crash, but they always managed to work through their issues. Their breakup was horrible, but at least we can picture a scenario in which Arizona left Seattle in order to reunite with Callie for good.

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Grey’s Anatomy may be a medical drama, but it’s definitely a show all about love and relationships. While some romances have lasted a long time — and let’s be honest, others have lasted too long — there have been those select few relationships that audiences seemed to connect with.

Whether it was two unlikely people getting together or a romance born out of friendship, Grey’s has always managed to make us feel like love is possible, no matter what. However, the show’s also manages to break our heart when the powers-that-be decide a relationship is done.

Though there are countless relationships that could go on this list, click through the gallery to see the seven most heartbreaking breakups over the years.

Grey's Anatomy, Season 16 Premiere, Thursday, September 26, 8/7c, ABC

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