Should children be shielded from a deadbeat parent?

T&A1987 T&A1987
If a couple has a child, but one parent runs off, should the child be told about said parent? What if the parent who keeps the kid could require that the other parent cannot contact the child, but in doing so, abdicates any child support?

My thought is that it's better to know the truth and accept a grim reality than be lied to. Besides, it is likely that the child may one day seek out the parent and it's better to know he's a deadbeat than think he just wasn't able or legally permitted to contact the child. Besides, the money might be what helps them make rent.

A friend thinks it's better for the child to think he's loved by both parents than know the truth.
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