A technique involves facilitating fracturing operations along a wellbore (22) extending through a subterranean formation. A stress device (36) is deployed in a wellbore and activated to engage a surrounding wall (42). The stress device can then be manipulated to create a reduced stress region in the formation at a desired location along the wellbore. The reduced stress region facilitates the controlled formation of a fracture (34) in the formation at the desired location. Furthermore, the stress device can be moved and the process repeated at multiple locations along the wellbore.