Factors associated with marital dissolution among ever-married women in Cameroon
Tumanjong, Miranda Ngumbusi
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The aim of this study was to assess the factors associated with marital dissolution among women in Cameroon. The 2018 Cameroon Demographic and Health Survey (CDHS) data was used. A sample of 4,562 ever-married women was selected from the domestic violence module. Frequency distributions were used to describe the characteristics of respondents. Chi-square tests were used to establish the association between MD and the explanatory variables. Binary logistic regressions were used to establish the factors that were associated with MD among married women in Cameroon. Over one in ten women (11%) of the ever-married women experienced marital dissolution. Women between the ages 40-49 years were more likely (AOR= 2.56; 95% CI: 1.67- 3.94) to experience MD compares to those 15-24 years. Women who resided in urban areas where at higher odds (AOR= 1.76; 95% CI: 1.20 -2.57) of marital dissolution than those who were in rural areas. Women in the Centre region were twice more likely (AOR=2.17; 95% CI: 1.23-3.85) to experience marital dissolution compared to those in the North. Women who belonged to the Catholic religion were at higher odds (AOR=1.75; 95% CI: 1.07-2.88) of marital dissolution compared to Muslims. Women who had 6-9 children were less likely (AOR=0.35; 95% CI: 0.17-0.72) to have dissolved unions compared those with no child. Poorer women had higher odds (AOR=1.93; 95% CI: 1.18-3.15) of MD compared to the poorest. Respondents that were currently working had higher odds (AOR 1.71; 95% CI: 1.21-2.41) of MD compared to those who were not. Women whose partners had control issues had higher odds (AOR=1.86; 95% CI: 1.15-2.44) of MD compared to those who were not. Women who experienced emotional IPV were at higher odds (AOR=1.59; 95% CI: 1.03-2.43) of MD compared to those who did not. Conclusively, marital dissolution through divorce or separation among ever married women in Cameroon is associated to age, place of residence, region, children ever born, religion, wealth index and respondent currently working. Other factors such as partner’s behavior and intimate partner violence are also associated with marital dissolution. The study recommends community-level studies to understand baseline causes of divorce, for intervention. Couples’ counseling, information, education, and communication is necessary for emotional IPV.