Stay-at-home dads are increasingly common in the United States, especially as families explore different gender roles or attempt to navigate the difficult job market. But while some are finding bliss by taking care of the home while their spouse works, a new study shows a less positive general trend: stay-at-home dads are more likely to file for divorce and more likely to get asked for a divorce.

According to a new study published in the most recent issue of the American Journal of Sociology and conducted by Ohio State University, significantly more marriages end in divorce when the father of the family is at home at the kids instead of bringing in pay. On the other hand, whether or not women stayed at home or acted as caregiver did not change the rate of divorce.

Critics of the study, however, point out two major flaws in the research. First, the study includes data from as far back as the 80s, when stay-at-home dads were not as accepted or understood by society. Secondly, the study did not take into account whether dads were at home with the kids voluntarily or whether they chose their lifestyle – a key point. Perhaps, critics say, divorce is more likely when dad is unemployed and forced to take on a role he doesn’t necessarily want.
Molly B. Kenny
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Divorce and Child Custody Attorney Serving Bellevue and Seattle Washington
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