"He was like, 'This is not what I signed up for,'" Ellen Pompeo said of husband Chris Ivery's reaction to seeing her steamy scenes with Patrick Dempsey

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Chris Ivery and Ellen Pompeo attend a basketball game between the Los Angeles Clippers and Cleveland Cavaliers at Staples Center on January 14, 2020 in Los Angeles, California
Credit: Allen Berezovsky/Getty

Although many Grey's Anatomy fans were heartbroken when Patrick Dempsey exited the show in 2015, one viewer likely breathed a sigh of relief.

Ellen Pompeo recently revealed husband Chris Ivery's initial reaction to seeing her share intimate scenes with Dempsey's McDreamy. "Poor guy had no idea what he was getting into," she said on the Ladies First with Laura Brown podcast.

"I remember in the beginning it was really hard for him," Pompeo recounted. "He was like, 'This is not what I signed up for. You go to work and make out with that. I like Patrick and everything, he's a good dude, but like really?'"

The Golden Globe nominee, 51, has played the titular Dr. Meredith Grey since the show premiered in 2005. Dempsey, 55, played her love interest and eventual husband, Dr. Derek Shepherd, until the character met a tragic end in season 11.

Ellen Pompeo Says Grey's Anatomy Sex Scenes Were 'Really Hard' for Husband Chris Ivery: 'Poor Guy'
Credit: Karen Neal/Walt Disney Television via Getty

They recently shared one last scene, after Dempsey made a surprise return in season 17. "Patrick and I have this chemistry where I think even from when we first met, for some reason it just felt like we've known each other for a hundred years, and it's just the same feeling," Pompeo told Deadline in November.

"It's like riding a bike, we just have a chemistry and a dynamic that's always served us well, and I think we have a genuine affection for each other," she added.

The show was renewed for season 18 in May.

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The actress met Ivery, 54, a music producer, at a grocery story in 2003, and they got married four years later in 2007, during an intimate City Hall ceremony in New York City.

"We're blessed," Pompeo told PEOPLE of their marriage in January 2008, before Ivery chimed in: "I'm the real McDreamy!" Pompeo and Ivery share three kids — daughters Stella Luna, 11½, Sienna May, 6½, and son Eli Christopher, 4½.