The Real Issue with Grey's Anatomy

Last night was the Grey’s Anatomy Musical Event and today the internet is ablaze with opinions on whether or not it worked as an episode. Lost in all the commentary is the story at the heart of it all – the relationship between Callie and Arizona. For those who don’t watch the show, Callie and Arizona are together and Callie is pregnant with Mark’s baby.  The most shocking scene for me was not Callie lying bloodied on the hood of the car or the fact that she was facing death. The scene that caused me to gasp and brought me to tears was one that took place between Mark and Arizona as they discussed the risks involved in saving Callie and the baby: 

Mark: You never wanted this. You never asked for one. Why are you even giving some opinion on what you-- Arizona: No. No. You know what I didn’t ask for? I didn’t ask for you Mark. Because you wanna know what you are? You're basically a sperm donor. This is me and this is Callie and we're together, so I say-- Mark: No, you don’t get a say. This is my family. I’m the father. I’m the father. You’re not anything. You’re nothing. 

You’re not anything. You’re nothing. 

With those cruel words, Mark gives voice to the worst fear of every non-biological parent out there. More than the songs and drama last night, those words are the most haunting because – as much as we would like to pretend otherwise – they are true in a legal sense. Callie and Arizona cannot legally marry. Arizona has no legal standing to make decisions for Callie. She has no say in what happens to the baby. Legally, she is neither wife nor mother. This is the profound truth that many LGBT couples and parents live with and it is terrifying. So, instead of talking about the flow of the episode and the voices of the actors and actresses, can we talk about that?