The present study was designed to shed light on the relation between parenting stress, father's alcohol use, child characteristics and father's engagement and availability. The study cohort comprised 821 fathers of preschool children in Finland. Parenting stress and child's mood, acceptability and demandingness were related to father's engagement to the preschooler and to the extent of the father's availability. Parenting stress began a cycle of alcohol abuse and child-negative characteristics, and eventually led to a decrease in joint father-child activities, father's feeling of compulsory engagement, daily conflict situations, difficulty in including the child in everyday activities and a reduction in the amount of time spent directly or indirectly together. (Author abstract)
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