I have a 3 year old son and an 18 month old daughter and they are generally good kids. Our son is at that age where he is pushing the boundaries and seeing what he can and can't get away with, which I understand, that is part of growing up. My wife and I won't tolerate certain things, like horsing around at the dinner table, pushing/hitting others or requiring us to tell him to do (or not do) something 3 times, just to give some examples. He still is a 3 year old boy, so we have to keep that in mind. If he does those kinds of things then he gets punished, which typically means reflecting on his bad behavior on the "naughty step" and then we have a talk. If he is REALLY defiant, then we will go as giving him a bath and he goes straight to bed, which we HATE doing because that is a crappy way to end the night. So I need a reality check - how harsh is too harsh for dealing with a 3 year old? We won't allow our kids to run all over us (we see how other parents let that happen) but I also don't want to be the kind of dad who is an a-hole all the time. He is still so young that I am not sure a punishment like bath/bed has the desired impact. We are trying to find a balance between setting boundaries and levying relevant punishments (we won't do corporal punishment) but not being "nazi parents" either that our kids don't want to be around.