Relationships 101: Are You A Reacher?

Think you're not the type who settles for Mr. Pwede Na? Think again. You might be falling into another relationship pitfall: being "The Reacher."

Up until recently, you were happily “settled” in your relationship: comfortable, nestled, and satisfied…or were you?

Suddenly, after stumbling upon last week’s column, you began to question your so-called perfect relationship--simply because you never thought you’d consider yourself as The Settler. But now that you have an idea what a Settler is, this week we'll delve into its alter ego: The Reacher.

If the Settler is the one who “takes what they can get” out of the relationship, the Reacher is believed to be the one who tries to attain those who may or may not be “out of their league.” Still don’t get it? You may also recognize them as the “modelizers,” “social climbers,” or “gold diggers.” You get the drift? These people feed on others and mask their low self-esteem by allowing themselves to be defined by who they’re dating, a.k.a., their trophy boyfriends/husbands! (Who are they kidding, really?)

Reachers believe that if they date someone who is supposedly more interesting, smarter, richer, more popular, much older or way younger, more attractive, of higher social stature, or the like, then they too must be just as interesting or has it going on in the eyes of others.

Sounds familiar? By now you must’ve figured out whether you’re a Settler or a Reacher. Remember, both vary in degrees. Many may even think they’re neither because the tell-tale signs are often too sneaky. If you think about it, the Reacher, in the end, also becomes a Settler. Why? They may have gotten the prestige, bigger closet, envy of others, and more, but ARE THEY SINCERELY HAPPY? Both parties actually sacrifice their ultimate happiness in either of two ways:

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1. Settlers believe they don’t deserve ultimate happiness while Reachers think they can do without it.

2. Both rely heavily on what others think of them rather than what they think of themselves.

The bottom line is, whether you’re a Settler or a Reacher, there is only one underlying cause of such a relationship syndrome: low self-esteem.

Yup, you read that right. Insecurity or low self-esteem is in EVERYONE. Even the person with the highest self-esteem will always have insecurities. However, putting it in a positive light, insecurities are actually what make us human. It can either be the catalyst for us to excel and get past them or the decaying backbone that tries to spread the virus to anyone they can get their hands on. Just take a look at blogs in cyberspace! Some choose to use their voice to condemn while others use it to uplift others.

Insecurity is like a snake’s venom. It can kill but it can also be its own anti-venom. Hence, use your insecurities to YOUR ADVANTAGE. The CHOICE IS UP TO YOU.

Although this may be a bit lengthy, this is worth the read, ladies! Get ready for some exercises you SHOULD try to help ease you out of the gutter.

  1. According to retired cardiac nurse and journalist Shelley Adams, “Low self-esteem almost always starts in childhood. Low self-esteem combines beliefs with emotions. As a person believes she is not worthy, she experiences the emotions that those beliefs inflict.” These could be depression, self-loathing, eating disorders, staying in an abusive relationship, suicidal tendencies, and more.

    So ask yourself, did you ever go through experiences such as abuse (verbal, emotional, or physical), sibling rivalry, or always being compared to others? Once you recollect such memories, i