Why did Amelia reject Link’s proposal?

Fans were left in shock during the season 17 finale of Grey’s Anatomy, when Amelia rejected Link’s proposal and things quickly escalated.      

The Grey’s Anatomy season 17 finale began with Meredith on the beach, throwing rose petals in the air. This was in preparation for Maggie and Winston’s wedding, while Link prepared for a marriage proposal, which quickly went south.

The finale doubled down on Amelia’s feelings, as she realized through her therapy Zoom group, that she did not want what Link wanted. She did not want to get married or have more children. She kept this information to herself as she did not want to break Link’s heart.

Amelia often referred to her marriage with Owen when talking to Link about marriage. She stated that she was a terrible wife to him and when Link reminds her that she had a brain tumor at the time, she still credits her own personality as the main source of the problem.

Her problems were fully illustrated by a conversation with Richard Webber, another doctor who strives to overcome the disease of addiction. “It doesn’t have to work,” Richard told Amelia about her relationship after an addiction support meeting. He continued, “You’re allowed to want what you want. Even if it’s not what he wants.”

Later on in the episode, Link can be seen standing on the beach with Meredith’s children. Amelia then walks closer to them as they each pull out an engagement ring. He wants to spend his life with her. “You challenge me, you thrill me, you impress the hell out of me…,” he says during the proposal. Amelia is shocked by the proposal and does not say a word. Link is heartbroken as he realizes that she does not want to accept the proposal. This all represents personal growth for Amelia, as she has allowed her feelings to dictate what she wants, despite it being devastating to Link.

The season ends as fans witness Jo Wilson getting a knock on her door; it is Link asking to stay at her place after what went down with Amelia. There is, however, the possibility that the couple will get back together in season 18 of Grey’s Anatomy, even if the trajectory of Link’s arc seems to be pushing him towards Jo.