@caffeineinjection @timmytoad Disabled / suppressed parent page links used to be a feature in many of my ThemeFlood RapidWeaver themes a couple of years ago. Touch screens and website accessibility were one factor in me removing support for disabled links, but not the main problem…
I found that disabled links were SEO suicide. Seriously - people would turn on support for disabled links in the theme settings and then a few days later their websites would plummet from Google search results.
After trawling through analytics and webmaster reports, it would transpire that these disabled pages were seen as broken links or blank pages to search engines. Often search engines could not see or reach the pages under disabled links.
Given the prominence high-up in sitemaps these disabled page links often occupied, this sometimes led to catastrophic SEO issues for some theme customers. It became apparent more and more people were hitting the same problems.
Obviously I don’t what to include stuff in my themes which is knowingly going to cause people grief! So I took the very public decision to pull the feature from my themes. Life has been good ever since…
I don’t know what mechanisms other developers use in their themes to disable links. But however you look at it, it’s a hack; so there’s possibly going to be consequences elsewhere of doing it.
My advice remains to keep all pages active and populated with content. Build a website around your content, not around your theme or navigation structure. For example, some websites do not need drop-down menu’s; a simple split or sidebar block navigation can often prove more than adequate.