19 Characters Who Would Sacrifice Their Love Lives for the Greater Good

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Love is blind. It's a centuries-old cliche, and it's unlikely to disappear anytime soon.

How many times have we seen characters use love as a justification to act selfishly and let the world burn? 

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It's never easy, but the characters below realized doing the right thing meant giving up the person they loved. Their reasons for doing so varied. Some made the sacrifice to save the world. Others realized they had a bigger destiny to fulfill. 

What motivated your favorite characters?

1. Dr. Bailey - Grey's Anatomy

Dr. Bailey - Grey's Anatomy
Dr. Bailey believes in love but doesn't allow it to override her principles. When Tucker attempted the "your marriage or your career" ultimatum on her, she divorced him. On the day of her wedding to Ben, she dropped everything to save Adele's life. Fortunately, Ben admires Bailey's adherence to her code and waited for her "I do."

2. Zuko - Avatar the Last Airbender

Zuko - Avatar the Last Airbender
Zuko finally had everything he wanted. His exile from the Fire Nation was at an end; he was at his father's side, and he could finally have a real relationship with Mai. Then his father revealed his plan to annihilate the Earth Kingdom. Zuko defected to Team Avatar -- breaking up with Mai (with a letter) in the process.

3. Nolan - The Perfectionists

Nolan - The Perfectionists
At first blush, Nolan seemed like just another rich boy manipulating everyone around him into doing his bidding and debasing his girlfriend. It was later revealed he was not a completely heartless prick. His feelings for Ava were real, but he needed to say otherwise to further the investigation into Hotchkiss Technologies.

4. Clarke - The 100

Clarke - The 100
People look to Clarke for the answers because she has the qualities almost all great leaders embody -- the most important being the ability to make the tough choices. One of her most memorable and gutwrenching choices occurred when the Gounders were about to torture Finn for massacring several Grounders. Sadly accepting she couldn't save his life, Clarke told Finn she loved him before mercy killing him.

5. Jeff Winger - Community

Jeff Winger - Community
Greendale taught Jeff to put the needs of others before his own. This includes giving up sex in order to do a bottle episode about finding Annie's missing pen. Jeff made a personal sacrifice not only for his friends but for the audience as well because that bottle episode became one of Community's finest episodes.

6. Mon-El - Supergirl

Mon-El - Supergirl
TV shows don't plot out musical episodes as a way to bring a couple together for just any couple, but the Arrowverse did for Kara and Mon-El. To balance it out though, they became star-crossed lovers as Mon-El couldn't stay on Earth and then wound up marrying someone else. Even after the love triangle sorted itself out, Mon-El realized he couldn't stay with Kara because the future needed him more.

7. Loralei Gilmore - Gilmore Girls

Loralei Gilmore - Gilmore Girls
When it comes to romantic relationships, Loralei is very self-sacrificial. She broke up with Max when the backlash of them dating caused trouble for Rory. Despite the heartbreak, she gracefully stepped aside so Christopher could go back to a pregnant Sherry. Then she ended her relationship with Jason after he sued her father.

8. Eddie - A Million Little Things

Eddie - A Million Little Things
In the course of one season, Eddie went from despicable to someone worth rooting for. Katherine noticed his character development too. Just as she was ready to get back together, Eddie told her he had a confession -- almost certainly about fathering a child on Deliah. The news will definitely derail or possibly torpedo their reconciliation, but, in choosing to come clean, Eddie made the right choice.

9. Farkle - Girl Meets World

Farkle - Girl Meets World
Nerdy guys doggedly pursuing girls who don't reciprocate and actually like someone else is a television staple. What makes Farkle appreciably different from the Urkels and Screeches is how he genuinely cares about Riley and Maya's happiness. If this means helping Riley with her crush on Lucas, he'll gladly do it.

10. Debbie - GLOW

Debbie - GLOW
Debbie nearly gave up being Liberty Belle to go back to Mark, but she realized it was better to be a wrestling hero than married to someone who resents you. After GLOW went Vegas, she fell for Tex. However, when he made it clear he didn't respect her as a business savviness, she decided to buy out the tv network he wanted from under him. Now she has the opportunity to make television history.

11. Nick Scratch - Chilling Adventures of Sabrina

Nick Scratch - Chilling Adventures of Sabrina
Nick kept his motives close to his vest thereby creating an air of ambiguity around him. Did he really care about Sabrina, or was he using her for some nefarious purpose? The answer is both. He followed the order to seduce Sabrina, but he also saved her and everyone else when he gave up his body to imprison the Dark Lord.

12. Hopper - Stranger Things

Hopper - Stranger Things
We've been wanting Hopper and Joyce together since the beginning. Their constant bickering got annoying, but there was still hope the two of them would work things out and finally reach the next level in their relationship. All that changed the moment Hopper gave Joyce permission to destroy the machine keeping the Gate to the Upside Down open and him along with it.

13. June - The Handmaid's Tale

June - The Handmaid's Tale
Finally, after 2 seasons of watching June and Emily be tortured, they were finally making a break for it to Canada. Only at the last moment, June told Emily to go on without her. She needed to stay behind to rescue Hannah and planned on taking Gilead down from the inside, even if it meant, among other things, losing the chance to reunite with Luke.

14. Ronnie Raymond - The Flash

Ronnie Raymond - The Flash
More than superpowers or a dizzying intellect, what makes someone a hero is his or her ability to sacrifice themselves completely. Ronnie had that ability. He stopped the Singularity and saved Central City but at the cost of his life and resulting in Caitlin being a widow.

15. Jon Snow - Game of Thrones

Jon Snow - Game of Thrones
In his relationships with both Ygritte and Dany, Jon had to choose -- duty or love. Duty won out in both instances. He hated himself for betraying them, but he could live with it. What he couldn't live with was allowing more and more people dying when it could be prevented.

16. Midge - The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel

Midge - The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
When Midge was offered the opportunity to take her comedy act on tour, she immediately said yes and decided if she really wanted to be a success she had to give up everything to make it happen, including her engagement to Benjamin. The reasoning is faulty, but any choice that keeps Midge on stage must be the right one.

17. John Nolan - The Rookie

John Nolan - The Rookie
Officer Nolan gives people the benefit of the doubt, so he wouldn't be suspicious of whether Jessica's takedown of a suspect was a good shoot unless he had good reason to be. It's likely he won't let go of the issue until it's fully investigated, which makes the end of his and Jessica's relationship inevitable.

18. Vanessa - Phineas and Ferb

Vanessa - Phineas and Ferb
Vanessa is the daughter of a mad scientist trying to take over the Tri-State area, but don't think she'll be pleased when she catches a boyfriend committing villainy. She prefers good guys. Something else she won't tolerate from a boyfriend -- him making fun of her dad. If you do, she will kick you to the curb.

19. Lucifer - Lucifer

Lucifer - Lucifer
Lucifer hated ruling Hell so much he ran away to Los Angeles. There he continued to live a life dedicated to debauchery and hedonism -- until he met Chloe. Thanks to her he began working out his daddy issues and became less selfish, which allowed Chloe to open up about her love for him. Unfortunately, she did so at the moment realized he needed to go back and take responsibility for Hell.

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