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Be careful about saying unkind things about your child's missing parent. Children need to be taught to respect their parents, even when one of them tends to act like a jerk. In time, your children may see the truth for themselves, but hopefully by that time they have matured enough to realize we cannot control another person's behavior. Teach them to love and respect all people, even when that love is not returned. Don't put your child in a position of having to take sides against the other parent. They should love you both.