My husband started a new relationship, which is fine with me, but his NRE behavior is making me feel neglected

My husband recently started a long distance relationship, his first poly one in our marriage. This is their first relationship ever and identify as nonbinary. They've never met in person. I'm trying to be supportive but he is putting so much effort into this new relationship and hardly any into our marriage, that I'm starting to get a little jealous. I like his new partner and we get along okay so far. I want to be taken care of too. What can I do to not resent them for how my husband is acting?

You do a lot to answer your own question just in the wording - you don’t want to resent them for what your husband is doing. That makes total sense, because your husband’s behavior is his responsibility, not his partner’s. If you’re frustrated with how your husband is behaving, don’t blame someone else - he’s in charge of him, just like you’re in charge of you, and your metamour is in charge of themself. Focus on his behavior, rather than assuming that someone else is pulling the emotional strings.

It sounds like your husband is deep in the throes of New Relationship Energy, or NRE. It’s incredibly common for people to neglect existing, long-term relationships when they start a new one. There are a few reasons for this: the existing relationship is more situated and doesn’t feel like it needs constant tending, and the new relationship can be more emotionally exciting. And, since this relationship is long distance and since the person he’s dating is new to relationships, this is likely to be even more powerful and challenging.

Now, this is an explanation, it is not an excuse. You and your husband can use the framework of NRE to understand his behavior so that it can be addressed and managed. I’m not saying that you should brush off or get over it just because there’s a term for it, or because it’s a common phenomenon! Sometimes, NRE takes us over, and we need to consciously manage it. There’s nothing bad or malicious about getting caught up in NRE, as long as you take accountability and work to address it after your partner points it out.

Talk to your husband about what’s going on. Let him know that you’re happy that he’s enjoying his new relationship, but that you need him to be self-aware and intentional about how he spends his time and attention. Ask for some concrete things, like scheduling quality time together when he’s not also chatting with his new partner (better yet, put all devices away!). Remind him that you also want to be cherished and attended to. Give some examples of things you’d like from him. Share some things with him about NRE to read and discuss together.

I feel like I should also say that you should be willing to do some work to meet him halfway - as we polyamorists like to say, love is infinite, but time is not - but with the caveat that I think you’re already doing most of that work; I’m just cognizant that I have a wider audience than you. There will be times when he’s not able to fully attend to you, and it sounds like you’ve already done a lot of work to be okay with that, and that jealousy isn’t a huge factor here. You’re doing a great job being aware of your feelings (wanting to feel more taken care of, a budding resentment) and you’re aware that you don’t want to act on those feelings in ways that would be unhealthy. You’re doing great! But remember that it’s not just about tamping down or ignoring emotions like resentment; it’s okay to ask your husband to make some adjustments to help you feel more comfortable.