Divorces in Oregon and around the country are far more likely to be initiated by women than men according to several studies. After studying more than 300 married couples over a period of 16 years, researchers from the University of Michigan found that women initiate the process twice as often as men do. Other studies have put the figure even higher and suggest that women initiate eight out of 10 divorces. Education also appears to play a role. The American Sociological Association found that women who have graduated college take the first step to end a marriage 90% of the time.
When fathers in Oregon consider divorce, they may hold back from leaving a clearly unhealthy relationship because they are worried about losing their relationship with their children. However, across the country, family courts increasingly favor joint custody and give both fathers and mothers an equal space to seek custody of their children. Even when physical custody rests primarily with one parent, joint legal custody is generally favored to recognize both parents' important roles in major decisions about the children's future.