This is my first time here. I have a 3-year old girl, who I am afraid takes after her "sperm donor". I was in an abusive relationship when I conceived her, and she was my reason to leave. She made me realise that my own safety should also have been reason enough to leave! She has now passed through the terrible twos, and into the threes, and it is becoming apparent that her behaviour is beyond what I should expect for her age. Her "sperm donor" was diagnosed with Oppositional Defiance Disorder as a child, and never grew out of it. Her behaviour is starting to get out of hand - she just doesn't obey the rules. She knows she is doing naughty things - she will close herself in her room when she wants to get into something, or close me in the room I'm in. Even though they say 3 year olds don't understand 'sorry', I believe she does. She says sorry for the things she does (naming what she did wrong) and gives me a cuddle. Usually she will say what she did wrong without prompting. One time she apologised for something I hadn't even caught her out on yet! ... and after a 10 minute interlude - she was supposed to be having 'quiet time' where she plays in her room by herself for a short time - she had gone into the kitchen and taken a number of knives, a bananna and some carrots and the peeler, and had bannana mashed all over her bedroom floor yesterday it was a dozen eggs and a loaf of bread all over the floor a few days before that it was a litre of milk, and a kilo of washing powder to 'clean it up' with a wet mop - we had to have the carpets steam cleaned. After the events of this week, I am at my wits end. I am finding it hard to cope. I have started a 'star chart' of sorts, with a good and bad side. On the good side she gets to put a sticker when she keeps the rules, and on the bad side, I draw a sad face for when she breaks the rules. Enough stickers and she gets a lollie at the end of the day (natural confectionary co.) Too many sad faces, and she gets a time out - though I may have to revise that, because she's only got 4/5 and already a time out is needed. I suspect that a constructivist approach is needed, but I need to know how to implement it with a 3 year old. (I'm studying to be a secondary teacher). As they say, in the long run, the only worthwhile control is self control. I need to help her to learn that. Right now I'm just seeking some support from other parents, and to commiserate with other parents who a having similar problems.