Love it or hate it, pornography exists. Side-stepping the legal and moral arguments surrounding pornography, men, on the whole, seem to have a use for it. (Face it, if there wasn’t a market for it, it wouldn’t exist.)
Men and women physically view pornography differently. For women, the viewpoints range from disgust to interest to indifference because women tend to want a story. Men, as we’ve already discussed, tend to think in images (at least on this particular topic) so pornography fills a McSex need.
So what should you do if you wake up in the middle of the night to find your significant other watching porn? You have the right to be angry that he’s withholding something from you, however, reacting with anger or shame will not get you to your goal. Use this as an opportunity to open up a discussion on pornography, what he’s been watching, what he likes, why he likes it (this one may not be easy for him to answer), etc. You will probably hear some things that don’t thrill you however try to keep an open mind. It may help to have this conversation in front of a counselor who can help mediate a potentially volatile discussion.
While I would normally counsel people to try to incorporate their partner’s interests into their sex life, I understand that this may be a difficult one. Do the best you can with it without moving so far out of your comfort zone that you’re actually damaging the relationship. Be as understanding as you can be.
Of course you should be aware of potential red flags – illegal pornography (children, animals, etc.), pornography addiction (hard for a lay person to diagnose, take it to a counselor), pornography interfering with “normal” life (unable to perform with it, affecting work, family, etc.), and an interest in anti-female pornography (BDSM pornography is one thing, anti-female pornography is quite another).