I'm a straight cis-female, and have been in a relationship for a year and a half (with a cis-male). We share the same faith, but have differing views on what it means for sexuality. I am okay with pre-marital sex in a monogamous relationship, while he is uncomfortable with any kind of pre-marital sexual activity (this includes breast/ass groping). So far, it's worked fine-- in my opinion, if a couple disagrees on boundaries, they ought to go with the more conservative boundary, so as to avoid making people uncomfortable. Even though I would establish different boundaries for myself, I've accepted his boundaries as our boundaries.
This is my partner's first relationship. I've been in relationships before, including sexual ones, but the sexual aspect has never been healthy-- sex is all tangled up in guilt and self-abuse. My only experience of PIV sex (which was also my most recent sexual encounter) was an extended case of sexual abuse by an authority figure. In a previous sexual relationship, my partner would initiate sexual activity, and then blame me for participating. So, my experience of sex is tangled and nasty and uncomfortable.
My current relationship has been really good for me-- it's a safe space to engage in some erotic touch and plenty of kissing, and because my partner has more conservative boundaries than I do, I never feel pushed. I've finally been able to start masturbating again; orgasms used to just be scary, because I related them to rape (the only time I've ever had an orgasm with someone else was in a non-consensual encounter, and it sucked). I even had two orgasms while making out recently-- no genital touching, just brain-gasms, and it was awesome and exciting, but I didn't feel comfortable sharing the news with my partner, because I'm afraid it would make him uncomfortable.
I also still have loads of trouble with guilt-- if my partner admits that he's uncomfortable with something I'm doing, or needs to take a break to get himself under control, I immediately feel awful and guilty and wretched, like I'm perverting this lovely innocent self-controlled man (even though I know that isn't true.)
So, I feel like I'm in this very weird situation, where my partner is doing wonders for my sex life, but he has no idea, and if I told him it would make him uncomfortable. And lately (this is pretty much the tl;dr version) I've started getting really annoyed that we don't have more liberal boundaries. I'm not sure I'm ready for PIV sex yet-- there's a load of aforementioned baggage there-- but I feel like I've made loads of progress and then stalemated, because we can't go any further without making my partner uncomfortable, which I don't want to do.
I haven't articulated a question yet. I guess what I'm wondering is 1) ideas to keep me from resenting my man's boundaries and 2) ideas to help me respect them more. Or 3) is there a non-aggressive way to bring up the topic and see if he'd be willing to re-consider some boundaries, without making him feel uncomfortable or pressured in any way? I do not want to pressure him!!!! I would much rather be a bit frustrated than have him uncomfortable.
Um... so. Ideas? Advice?