Meredith and Cristina’s friendship was one of the best on Grey’s Anatomy, and the two always supported one another in their own weird and wonderful ways. Even after Cristina’s departure in season 10 of the show, their friendship never faltered.
However, they didn’t always see eye to eye, and as with any long-term friendships, they had their fair share of arguments. Whilst they always figured it out in the end, fans haven’t forgotten some of the things they did to each other when they were batting heads.
10 Meredith Didn’t Defend Cristina
The introduction of Meredith’s old friend Sadie in season 5 stirred up a lot of trouble at the hospital, particularly when Sadie coaxed the interns into performing an appendectomy on her in order to improve their surgical skills. The procedure predictably went wrong, and Lexie was forced to get Meredith and Cristina to help them.”In The Midnight Hour,” thus saw Cristina and Meredith get in trouble with Webber for not alerting him sooner of what the interns were up to.
The situation only got worse when Meredith didn’t defend Cristina to the Chief, after Webber found out that Cristina had already tried to shut down the interns’ warped training attempts. Cristina was left feeling betrayed by Meredith and she got the full brunt of Webber’s punishment and was even denied her chance at performing the first solo surgery.
9 Meredith Neglected Cristina’s Feelings
The hospital shooting at the end of season 6 was one of the saddest episodes in Grey’s Anatomy history, and the trauma induced by it was a lingering narrative arc in the following season. Cristina was one of the most affected by the events, and struggled greatly with how much everyone seemed to have moved on, particularly Meredith.
In “That’s Me Trying,” Cristina finally confronted Meredith over how her actions were severely detrimental to Cristina, and how she couldn’t move on as quickly as her. Cristina explained how she couldn’t heal because Meredith had put her in a traumatic situation when she asked her to operate on Derek, whilst she had a gun to her head. Up until this point, Meredith had suppressed her own trauma, but in doing so neglected to see how her actions had affected her best friend.
8 They Both Lied To Each Other About Their Relationships
In season 1, both Meredith and Cristina begun relationships with their superiors in secret – Meredith with Derek, and Cristina with Burke. At this point, the two were just beginning to form a fully-fledged friendship, yet they both lied to the other about their respective relationships in fear of judgment.
Throughout the entire series, it was rare for the two to lie to each other, so to have the basis of their friendship surrounded with this deception wasn’t particularly the best start. The two would, however, go on to trust each other more as the seasons went by, but considering how quickly they bonded, this could have been something they navigated together, rather than apart.
7 They Went Along With Each Other’s Bad Ideas
Meredith and Cristina were friendship goals throughout their time on the show, through the ways that they always understood and supported each other. However, they were also notorious for going along with each other’s bad ideas, and getting into trouble. One of the best examples of this was in “She’s Gone”, when both of their respective relationships were in a critical state, and they both supported the other in avoiding their partners.
Meredith had tampered with Derek’s Alzheimer’s Trial, thus putting her and Derek’s relationship, and the possibility of adopting Zola, in jeopardy, and Cristina and Owen were arguing over their unplanned pregnancy. Impulsively, Meredith stole Zola from the daycare at the hospital, in fear of her getting taken away, and enlisted Cristina to help her. Whilst it was good thing that they always helped each other, sometimes they would have been better friends to one another had they been more objective.
6 Meredith Took The Surgery Without Saying Anything
In the very first episode of Grey’s Anatomy “A Hard Day’s Night,” Meredith and Cristina decided to team up together to try and find out the reason for a patient’s seizures, and it was clear from the get-go that the two worked well together. Meredith promised Cristina that, should they solve the problem, she could be the intern to scrub in on the surgery.
However, when they eventually found the cause they were looking for and presented the evidence to Derek, Derek chose Meredith and Meredith said nothing. While this was only a small thing, the fact that Meredith had already agreed to give the surgery to Cristina, only to take up Derek’s offer anyway, was unfair. She knew how much the surgery meant for Cristina, but stood by and accepted the opportunity without even trying to help out Cristina.
5 They Both Were Hostile To Each Other’s Partners
In their attempts to always stick up for one another, Meredith and Cristina never shied away from voicing their feelings to each other’s partners, which often resulted in animosity. Cristina in particular, had a long-standing problem with Derek for the way he treated Meredith, going as far as to tell him that she didn’t like him.
In “Dream A Little Dream Of Me,” Cristina also told Meredith that she didn’t think she and Derek would ever work, and that she was tired of hearing about their relationship. Meredith similarly disapproved of Cristina’s relationship with Owen, and even threatened him in “Push,” that if he hurt Cristina, she would turn on him. Although they were only looking out for each other, it didn’t make their relationships any easier.
4 Cristina Went Behind Meredith’s Back
While ambition was one of Cristina’s best personality traits, it also made her extremely selfish, and unaware of how her actions would affect others. Cristina was trying to find an alternative for a conduit needed for one of her patients in the episode “Two Against One,” and realized she could use the 3-D printer brought to the hospital for Meredith’s research to print one.
However, Meredith was adamant that she needed the printer for her own work. Behind Meredith’s back, Cristina stopped Meredith’s 3-D liver from being printed, in order the print the conduit she needed, which in turn ruined the results of Meredith’s work. It was a selfish move on Cristina’s part, and it was completely unfair of her to prioritize her own work over Meredith’s.
3 Meredith Called Cristina A Shark
Season 10 of the show was a dramatic time for Meredith and Cristina, as they both tried to prove that they were the better surgeon. In “Man On The Moon,” the two finally came to blows, as the tension between them reached breaking point. Understandably, Meredith had been angry with Cristina for messing with her research in favor of her own work, and it led to Meredith feeling like her career wasn’t as important as Cristina’s.
In a heated argument, Meredith called Cristina out for sleeping with Shane, and sarcastically congratulated her on being a “shark”, aka the dedicated, but cold, surgeon she always wanted to be. Despite Cristina’s wrongdoings, Meredith’s words were an unnecessary deep-cut, and only proved how jealous she was of Cristina’s success.
2 Cristina Criticized Meredith’s Choices
Cristina proved time and time again to be Meredith’s best friend, but that didn’t stop her from voicing her frustrations to her over her behavior. In season 10, Cristina’s career was flourishing, and she was thus gaining lots of attention for her innovation in her work. Yet, she was so focused on her work that she neglected her friendship with Meredith.
Said in response to Meredith’s equally mean words, Cristina played right into Meredith’s insecurities of being a working mother, and meanly told her that she was the surgeon that their younger selves would have laughed at. Whilst the insult is said in defense, it was cruel, and showcased just how cold Cristina could be, even to her best friend.
1 Meredith Was Jealous Over Cristina’s Harper Avery Nomination
Whilst Meredith would eventually go on to win the coveted award herself, that didn’t stop her from experiencing feelings of jealously at the news of Cristina’s nomination for the Harper Avery award in “I’m Winning.” Meredith did try to be happy for her friend, but showed it in a way that she knew Cristina wouldn’t appreciate.
Cristina had made it abundantly clear that if she were to receive a nomination, she didn’t want any fanfare just in case she didn’t win. However, Meredith elected to throw a surprise gathering in the lobby of the hospital, complete with banner and champagne and all of their friends. Meredith wasn’t subtle about her jealousy either, and even admitted to Derek that the champagne toast was a way to hide her jealousy. Albeit a sweet gesture, it was sad that Meredith couldn’t celebrate Cristina without getting wrapped up in her own feelings.