When things at Grey Sloan are bad, they nearly always get worse. Case in point? During the middle of a nightmarish hacker ordeal that overtook the hospital, Jo, trying to save a patient, runs into none other than her abusive ex-husband, Dr. Paul Stadler (played by Matthew Morrison). Oof. Jo's abusive ex-husband found her on Grey's Anatomy, and anyone can tell you it's bad news.
The secret of Jo's ex-husband was originally uncovered when Alex proposed to Jo. Normally, this would be a happy event, but Jo had to tell Alex that no, she couldn't marry him. In true television drama form, she did not say why. Alex thought it was because she didn't love him, but really it was because Jo changed her name and moved states to escape her abusive ex-husband, Paul. Once she confessed to everything that was happening, Alex flew to Los Angeles to stalk Paul at a conference, and boy, did all the Grey's Anatomy viewers wish that he stomped Paul into a pulp. I know I did. But Jo begged those who knew at Grey Sloan to be quiet, and they obliged. It wasn't until Jo participated in a groundbreaking medical study with Meredith (for which Meredith won the Harper Avery Award) that Jo began to change her tune.
Jo realized that she could never get her due in the medical world unless she came clean about who she was. She was afraid that, if Paul saw her name (he's a doctor, too), he would come and find her. Jo chose not to live in fear, and that's commendable. The only part that sucks is that Paul did exactly what Jo thought he would do — he found her, flew to Seattle, to Grey Sloan Mercy Death hospital, and went looking for her. This will not end well, seeing as Jo could barely breathe when she saw Paul's stupid face standing in front of her. Thanks, fall finale for making me wait until 2018 to see how this ends. Many viewers agreed with this sentiment:
How am I supposed to wait two months, Grey's Anatomy? Oh, and here's another worrisome part of this equation — Alex Karev. Alex is known for flying off the handle. Remember when he beat the crap out of DeLuca when Karev thought DeLuca was attacking Jo? Alex punches first and then asks questions later. So, if Alex acts on his natural instincts, Alex will come out look like the bad guy and Paul will skate free.
According to Good Housekeeping, a woman is assaulted every nine seconds in the United States. Only 25 percent of abuses are reported to police, and a woman is 70 times (that's not a typo, that's 70) more likely to be killed in the two weeks after she leaves an abusive relationship than any other time in the relationship. All of that is simply terrifying, and Jo (as with all women) deserves so much better than this. Although she has decided that she can't live in fear and she wants to marry Alex, Paul did the exact thing that she was afraid of him doing — he came to find her. What does he want? Will he let her file for divorce and make a clean break? (Hah.) Why do I just see Paul as an evil Will Schuester? There are many questions that Grey's Anatomy has to answer.
The lucky part of it all is that Shonda Rhimes and company usually handle really tough issues with sensitivity and aplomb. For now, we'll just have to wait and see what happens when Grey's Anatomy returns on Jan. 18, 2018.