I have talked about boundaries, boundaries, boundaries for a couple of years now. Boundary-setting with certain people is getting easier for me now (before, boundaries were nearly non-existent), and now I am working on more advanced boundaries skills on my husband.
My self-respecting boundary plan is to say "ouch" whenever my husband says something hurtful, sarcastic, disrespectful, or mean to me. And if he continues to hurt me verbally, I simply continue saying "ouch" (nothing more), and I even walk away to protect myself if needed.
I do not attack him back with my words. I simply HONOR MYSELF by honoring my feelings whenever I feel hurt. When I am hurt, it is not because I am "too sensitive," it is because I have feelings. And as a woman, being in tune with my feelings is a GIFT!
I no longer attack him back when he hurts me. Instead of getting angry, I get vulnerable and express my PAIN. What he does with that is up to him. But I will do whatever it takes to take care of my heart. I expect no apologies.
If he gives an apology, I will be fully present and listen to every word. I will not interrupt him. I will let him express his full apology. I will not interrupt and say, "It's okay. It's okay" because hurting people is NOT okay. Instead, I will say, "Thank you for your apology. I accept your apology."
I DESERVE full, heart-felt apologies, but I will not EXPECT them. Expectations will get me into trouble!!! Expectations will lead to me becoming resentful and then acting out on my various addictions (control, L, debting, etc).
So in the event I get heart-felt apologies, I will receive, receive, receive fully!!!
If I decide to say anything MORE than simply "ouch" and I get defensive and attack my husband, this will make it very hard for my husband to see that he has said/done something hurtful to me because he will be focused on the hurtful things I said/did.
Sooooooo, the lesson is, keep your side of the street clean and just say, "ouch" when he hurts you and nothing more.
Honor your feelings and go and take care of yourself. Go and do some healthy self-care and connect with God - God is the ONLY one who can fill up the void that is in your heart!!! No human being can fill up that void!!! Not your husband. Not your friends. Not your cat. Not even yourself. Not today. Not tomorrow. Not ever.
Do not idolize your husband. Idolize God and connect with God!! Do the 6 Intimacy Skills on God!! Hallelujah!!