We first noticed a "difference" in T's behavior at 18 months. Since our oldest child has a physical disability and has not had a normal developmental history, we had no idea how big T's difference was and we just chalked it up to the terrible 2's, arriving early. He walked at 9 months and was already speaking amazingly clearly, so we figured that he was just precocious.
Early behaviors included the ever present "no". But beyond that, T didn't care about having our approval. We spanked at first. It had no effect on T's behavior and in fact made him more defiant. We tried time outs. He refused to stay. We tried taking toys or privileges away. Again, no effect on his behavior. We tried positive reinforcement. This had the odd effect of provoking negative behavior. I remember specifically when he was about 3 taking him out to lunch because he had had such a good morning. It was a big treat for him and he thoroughly enjoyed it. 15 minutes later, in a drug store, he was pulling things off of shelves, being loud, rolling on the floor, and just generally out of control.
We first tried to get help with behaviors when he was about 3. A licensed social worker who was more interested in our family's social history (who's parents were divorced, which uncle had a drug problem, who wasn't talking to who) than addressing our immediate problem with T. This was followed up with a psychologist who simply performed a lot of testing and came up with no recommendations, other than to say that he was not ADHD and was a very bright little boy.
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