->''"By the honor of pep talks!"''
-->-- '''WebVideo/TheNostalgiaChick''', on ''WesternAnimation/SheRaPrincessOfPower''

Writers sometimes try to add depth to their characters by giving them some sort of psychological problem -- [[SingleIssuePsychology always exactly one, neatly-explainable problem]]. Maybe they [[DoesNotLikeMen hate men]] due to a previous abusive relationship. Maybe the [[DarkAndTroubledPast memory of their dead little sister]] keeps getting them down. Or perhaps [[CartwrightCurse constantly having their girlfriend]] [[Website/WomenInRefrigerators locked in a refrigerator]] causes them to drive potential [[LoveInterests lovers]] away due to [[ItsNotYouItsMe fear for their safety.]]

After a while, writers may feel that the character has to lose this flaw. In RealLife, deep-seated psychological traumas take years to deal with and cure even in the best case scenario, and most require a lifetime of treatment -- [[ScarsAreForever mental scars are]] ''[[ScarsAreForever also]]'' [[ScarsAreForever forever]], after all. In fictionland, however, ThereAreNoTherapists; fortunately, FreudianExcuse, MyGreatestFailure, the HeroicBSOD, InTheBlood, and DysfunctionJunction, can be cured with a simple WhoopiEpiphanySpeech, growing BoredWithInsanity, a friend telling them to [[GetAHoldOfYourselfMan cop on]], confiding in someone about your BadDreams, the [[ThePowerOfLove strength]] or [[LoveRedeems redemption]] offered by love, or {{sidekick}}s or TrueCompanions showing them that ThePowerOfFriendship cures all wounds. The writers thus resolve the issue over the course of a single episode (or movie) and call it CharacterDevelopment, often at a cost of WillingSuspensionOfDisbelief. (On the plus side, this trope saves the audience a lot of time.)

Although this trope [[TropesAreTools works well to provide closure]] and end a story of struggle on an upbeat note, it can be naive, even dangerous, to think that real-life psychological disorders are so simple. Oftentimes, diagnosing the root of a disorder is just one step on the way to recovery, which may well take years of hard work. Harmful patterns of thought and behavior (like suicidal thoughts, eating disorders, and self-harm) will not break apart just because the patient has [[PuffOfLogic logically located their source]]. Epiphanies can be great sources of clarity and joy but they may or may not last long in the daily grind of thought and action.

Frequently administered by a WarriorTherapist or PsychologistTeacher.

See also ColdTurkeysAreEverywhere, CompressedVice, NotHimself, ResetButton, SnapBack, ArmorPiercingQuestion and WeWantOurJerkBack. Definitely not to be confused with either PercussiveTherapy or 'wall to wall therapy', though they both are known for resolving the situation pretty quickly, too (for very different reasons).

Failed attempts of giving this kind of therapy might come across as ActivistFundamentalistAntics.


[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* In ''Manga/GenkakuPicasso'', the general result is that once Picasso has helped with a person's mental trauma, they get a burst of confidence and understanding and are shown a few days later taking steps to finish overcoming it. Some stories, particularly [[spoiler:[[{{transgender}} Hishida]]'s]] ''do'' acknowledge that the person still has a lot work to do in taking their step forward.
* In ''Manga/ShugoChara'', [[spoiler: Nikaidou-sensei's HeelFaceTurn is encouraged by Suu's Remake Honey making his Shugo Chara that he thought he had killed (which threw him into an emotional breakdown) come back and talk to him. It leaves, but it is pointed out by Suu that he had said "See you again," and was therefore not gone forever.]]
* Parodied on ''Anime/OruchubanEbichu''. Ebichu's alter ego, Ebichuman, is a combination superhero and marital counselor whose superpower is the ability to sense people's sexual hangups.
* ''Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion'' : This is what the last two episodes are about, but the otherwise straightforward dialogue is accompanied by such abstract visuals that people tend to classify it as a MindScrew.
* In the ''Manga/TonaGura'' anime, a turning point is reached when Kazuki [[spoiler: views her own childhood diary and realizes that Yuuji hasn't changed; the young gentleman she remembered was a rose-colored fantasy. He was always playful and a bit rambunctious.]]
* In ''Manga/{{Naruto}}'', for most of his life, Gaara has been hated by everyone around him for [[SealedInsideAPersonShapedCan being a jinchuuriki]] , has had numerous assassination attempts upon him by his father and was forced to kill his uncle, the only person to show him sympathy (which was just an act). The Ichibi prevented him from being able to sleep, boosting his psychological trauma. He was very possibly the most AxeCrazy, psychotic character in the series, certainly in Part I. [[DefeatMeansFriendship Then he gets his ass kicked by Naruto]] and he has a few dozen episodes/chapters to let this sink in, though, he's just one of the guys. [[spoiler: Then he becomes a {{stoic}} variation of the KidAppealCharacter among the 5 Kages.]]
* Similar to [[Franchise/StarWars Darth Vader]] below, this is what happened to [[strike:Darth]] [[TheDarkSideWillMakeYouForget Yomi]] from ''Anime/GaReiZero''. Basically, she experienced a barrage of trauma and this led her to slaughtering lots and lots of people. But she did realize how much she loves her little sister Kagura [[spoiler: [[ShootTheDog as Kagura killed her to stop her]] RoaringRampageOfRevenge]], [[DyingAsYourself allowing her to die as herself]]. [[spoiler: This is repeated in the final volume of the manga.]]
* ''Manga/HayateTheCombatButler'': Hinagiku is fearful of loving someone because of her parents abandoning her, and her older sister, when she was younger. When she falls in love with Hayate, he breaks her of the fear, but it's still presented as a strong influence in her life.
* In ''Manga/FruitsBasket'', all of the Sohma family have deep-seated emotional problems, and while Tohru helps a number of them quite a lot, progress is realistically slow. For example, in the manga, [[spoiler: it seems like Tohru discovering Kyo's true form is going to be a case of EpiphanyTherapy, but Kyo is largely unchanged in the next volume - just somewhat happier and more trusting of Tohru. He still has major issues around being the cat from the Zodiac.]]
* In ''Anime/WhenMarnieWasThere'', the encounter with Marnie helps Anna to overcome her deep-seated [[ParentalAbandonment abandonment issues]].
* ''Anime/MobileSuitGundam00'' has Louise Halevy, who has some deep-seated revenge issues, as well as having to overcome forced evolution into a telepathic Innovator and being partially mind-controlled by the BigBad. At the end of the series [[spoiler:she's caught up in the big telepathic "Understanding Field" and her boyfriend Saji manages to bring her back from the DarkActionGirl she'd become]]. However, [[TheMovie two years later]], she's still in the hospital getting treatment for PTSD, among other things, and while she's getting better, she's far from cured.
* Across the entirety of ''Manga/BitterVirgin'', Hinako, who has suffered repeated rape at the hands of her stepfather, makes a few baby steps towards recovery, while acknowledging that she may never be free of her pain. Still, she considers the steps she has made, such as [[spoiler: being able to begin a relationship with Daisuke]], "miracles", which she never would have thought herself capable of.
* In ''LightNovel/SwordArtOnline'', Sinon has a severe phobia of guns in general (and the Type-54 "Blackstar" in particular) due to being a victim of armed robbery when she was eleven. She tries to conquer this phobia by playing a gun-based MMO, but it's only partially effective: she doesn't suffer from her phobia in-game, but it does little to counteract it in real life. By the end of the story she gets some emotional catharsis that helps her a bit, and she's able to hold it together when faced with a real-life gun for a couple of minutes, but she still freaks out in private afterward.
* ''LightNovel/KokoroConnect'' deals with a group of teenagers' emotional hang-ups. Often, they will appear to have dealt with an issue in one arc, only for it to come back with a vengeance a few arcs later and need to be dealt with again. In particular, it is suggested that Yui, while she gets a lot more confident over the course of the series, will have to continuously deal with her [[DoesNotLikeMen androphobia]] for years to come, possibly for the rest of her life.
* ''Manga/TheKurusagiCorpseDeliveryService'' tends to avert this. Most of the cast have some manner of psychological issue or other, and learning what caused it and confronting it gives, at best, some manner of closure that helps in the healing process. Notably, Sasaki is still actively seeing a therapist and taking antidepressants, a decade after seeing her family killed before her eyes and after the crew gives her the opportunity to to forgive one of the killers to his face and exposing the other.
* In ''Manga/OuranHighSchoolHostClub'', Tamaki does this to [[spoiler: his grandma Shizue]], revealing to the latter that his father had taught him about all the things she had loved, such as Japanese movies and shows, when she thought he didn't care for them. It helped [[spoiler: his grandma]] realize that [[spoiler: her son]] still loves her.

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* ''Franchise/MarvelUniverse''
** An issue of ''ComicBook/XFactor'' has the team going to therapeutic with Doc Samson (the universe's resident superhero psychiatrist). It helps some of them a little, and makes no difference to others. Then much of the original team goes back to him... and it's noted by Samson that they're significantly more messed up.
** Doc Samson uses this with [[Comicbook/IncredibleHulk Bruce Banner/The Incredible Hulk]] to merge his different personalities into one. This was later retconned away with Therapy Does Not Work That Way to establish that Samson had really just created a new, if more stable, alternate.
** In Ultimate X-Men, Professor Xavier helped a washed up martial arts student become a competent fighter by telepathically fixing her mental blocks.
** Cleverly averted in ''ComicBook/DarkAvengers.'' Norman Osborn pulls this on The Sentry to shake him out of an existential crisis, essentially just getting him to accept the "The Void" isn't real and he's in total control of his own life. Not only does this fail spectacularly, it sets up that Norman is transparently doing the same thing to his Goblin persona; trying and failing to convince himself that he's stable and will continue to be so as long as he keeps up the act.
* ''ComicBook/ThePowerpuffGirls'' story "Bow Jest" (issue #20) had Blossom rendered helpless and lacking in confidence after Buttercup steals her hairbow. After Mojo Jojo steals it, believing it to wield some untapped power, Bubbles clocks him, takes the bow, slams it on Blossom's head and lights a match under her butt about it. It works.
-->'''Bubbles:''' It's just a stupid hairbow! You're ''still'' a Powerpuff Girl whether you have it or not!
* The ComicBook/MartianManhunter had a deep seated fear of fire as his AchillesHeel, which made the second most powerful being in Creator/DCComics Earth vulnerable to matches. Thanks to some epiphany therapy with a flame powered hottie, he managed to remove the fear... only to discover it was a mental block placed by non-NeglectfulPrecursors to avoid his species becoming [[AlwaysChaoticEvil psychotic fire demons]] drunk on power.

[[folder:Comic Strips]]
* A cartoon from ''ComicStrip/TheFarSide'' features a therapist's technique for dealing with the fears of heights, snakes, and the dark...trapping a man in a darkened elevator suspended off a skyscraper roof and full of snakes.

[[folder:Films -- Animation]]
* In ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsonsMovie'', Homer gets an epiphany therapy from an old Eskimo woman, and realizes that he's nothing without his family and therefore must save Springfield to get them back. Played bizarrely realistically in that this only helps his guilt complex, and even then he doesn't find closure until he's actually helped his family out; meanwhile, [[TheDitz everything else wrong]] [[JerkWithAHeartOfGold with Homer Simpson]] is still strong in his psyche.

[[folder:Films -- Live-Action]]
* In ''Film/{{Inception}}'', [[spoiler:Dom Cobb finally confronts the dream projection of his long-lost wife, accepting her demise]]. It makes sense in this case because he is deep inside his own mind and the deeper layers are said several times to be more influential on the person than the upper layers.
* In the movie ''Film/{{Airplane}}'', ex-pilot Ted Striker is unable to fly as a result of having led a disastrous air raid in the war. He's cured, and able to save the day, when he's told that one of the pilots who died on the raid, in his last words, approved of Striker's decision to continue the attack.
* In ''Film/StarTrekVTheFinalFrontier'', the villain uses Epiphany Therapy as a [[PsychicPowers psychic power]] to gain control of people.
* In Creator/FritzLang's ''Film/SecretBeyondTheDoor'' (1948), the heroine (Joan Bennet) is able to bring her husband (played by Creator/MichaelRedgrave) out of his psychotic frame of mind by revealing to him that [[MommyIssues it wasn't his mother who locked him up as a child after all]].
* ''Franchise/StarWars'': Darth Vader murdered thousands of Jedi and probably millions of other people over twenty years, stood by while the billions of inhabitants of Alderaan were killed, force-choked many of his own subordinates, tortured Han, and generally helped maintain a reign of terror over the entire galaxy, yet when he saw his son being electrocuted, he quickly decides he's been wrong all along and kills the emperor.
* The end of ''Film/TheMachinist'', where [[spoiler: Reznik finally accepts having killed a boy in a car accident, turns himself in to the police]] and at the very end is seen sleeping peacefully for the first time in a year.
* In ''Film/{{Nell}}'', the title character's [[DoesNotLikeMen fear of male sexuality]] can be cured instantly by going skinnydipping with Liam Neeson. It makes a bit more sense in context, but not much.
* In ''Film/GoodWillHunting'', after a long series of therapy sessions, the patient's emotional trauma stemming from years of abuse is cured by repeating the phrase, "It's not your fault" over and over until he starts crying.
* Hilariously played with in ''Film/WhatAboutBob'', where the title character, while tied up with explosives strapped to him, manages to turn the situation into a metaphor that gets him over his mental issues, while using a literal application of the metaphor to escape his situation. The "played with" part is that he ''never'' realizes he's actually in danger, and believes the whole thing's a constructed roleplaying scenario designed to cause this sort of epiphany.
* Parodied in ''Film/HighAnxiety'', where a climactic situation sent Creator/MelBrooks's character into a childhood flashback, making him realize "I'm not afraid of heights, I'm afraid of ''parents''!"
* ''Film/ThePresidentsAnalyst'' is abducted by a Soviet agent, but gets out of a forced defection by engaging him in friendly conversation, and getting him to realize he only became a spy out of fear of his father, a high up in the KGB who arrested his mother in a Stalinist purge. The analyst says he could probably cure him, but it would take years and he couldn't do it if he was sent to Russia.
* In ''Film/TheMarriageChronicles'', the Masters submit the couples to increasingly more bizarre and extreme therapy in an effort to save their marriage. It seemingly works on two of the three couples, but the closing scene has a former patient, now divorced, suing the Masters for damaging her marriage with their antics.
* The entire second half of ''Film/{{Vertigo}}'' is a subversion. Scottie only overcomes his fear of heights [[spoiler:''after'' watching Judy/"Madeleine" fall to her death. Once again, his acrophobia prevented him from saving the woman he loved.]]
* Hitchcock averts it in ''Marnie''. The film ends with the title character confronting the source of her myriad psychological issues, but it's clear that she still has a long, hard recovery ahead of her.
* Jamie in Film/{{Shortbus}} claims to have had a sudden epiphany during his first therapy session with Sophia, who tells him that that kind of thing doesn't just happen and therapists don't hand out epiphanies like candy - most progress won't happen in a blinding flash of insight, and even when it does it typically only occurs after a lot of work.
* Parodied in the film ''Film/AnalyzeThis'':
** Mobster Paul Vitti has been seeing a psychologist, and makes a breakthrough that leaves him in tears. Unfortunately, it comes at the worst possible time -- he's in a gunfight with rival gangsters, and unable to fight back, causing his psychologist to say, "Paul, you have to channel all this nice grief into a murderous rage." At the end of the film, they both agree he still needs therapy.
** Vitti repeatedly thinks he's cured after minor epiphanies (some of which don't necessarily apply), and leaves treatment despite his psychologist insisting that there's much more buried underneath. Of course, he ends up still screwed up.
* ''Film/TheWoodsman''. Walter does have an epiphany, but that epiphany seems to be that EpiphanyTherapy just doesn't happen, and he will take time to change, but can overcome his demons as long as he doesn't give into them.
* In ''Film/TheGame'', Conrad (played by Sean Penn) signs his brother and film protagonist Nicholas van Orton (played by Michael Douglas) up for a game that helped bring him back from being bored and disillusioned.

* In ''Franchise/TheDarkTower'' series' second book, ''Literature/TheDrawingOfTheThree'', Odetta / Detta seems to recover from Dissociative Identity Disorder (incorrectly called schizophrenia in the book) when her two personalities merge; this merged personality calls herself Susannah. Several books later, when Susannah is possessed by a demon, Detta comes back to help Susannah deal with it.
* In Creator/PiersAnthony's ''Mode'' series a single telepathy-assisted Epiphany Therapy session in which Colene confronts a few specific traumatic experiences completely cures her major depression and other psychological problems. It's telepathy, after all.
* The ''Literature/{{Trapeze}}'' series generally plays this straight, although the fact that it's much less {{Anvilicious}} about it than other series makes it easier to swallow.
* ''Literature/TheDragonBelow'': Dandra's magically-induced split personality disorder takes a few moments of [[BattleInTheCenterOfTheMind internal conflict]] to resolve.
* Creator/AlanDeanFoster's ''Literature/HumanxCommonwealth'': Flinx gets over his {{Wangst}} in record time in ''Flinx Transcendent'', the GrandFinale of the series. This after spending the last... oh, six novels moping about how humanity doesn't deserved to be saved, he doesn't want to save it, and how his life sucks because he's a manufactured human rather than a natural one.
* In ''Literature/TheWheelOfTime'', Rand al'Thor spent 12 books gradually going mad due to the taint of the Dark One on the male half of the True Source and also the influence of Lews Therin, the man of whom he is the reincarnation and who exists as a voice in his head, that man having been driven completely insane by the taint before his death. Then, when he begins to feel desolate and hopeless about the state of the world and [[spoiler: almost kills his [[MuggleFosterParents dad]] during a heated argument]], he retreats to the top of the mountain that was created by Lews Therin's death throes and considers destroying the world with his awesome powers. [[spoiler:Fortunately for him and the world, he suddenly realizes that he has an opportunity to right Lews Therin's wrongs, so he instead uses his powers to destroy the artifact that made it possible for him to destroy the world, spontaneously integrates a sane version of the Lews Therin personality, and spends the 13th book fixing the stuff he screwed up during Book 12 because he was too busy shutting himself off emotionally.]] The greatest epiphany he has during this moment is that [[spoiler:there were never really two voices in his head -- it was always just him. He would never hear the "voice" of Lews Therin again.]]
* In ''Literature/WarriorCats'', when Firestar fears that Scourge will crush the clans, he laments that there were always four clans in the forest, but Scourge is trying to change that. Then [[TheWatcher [=StarClan=]]] tell him [[spoiler: that there were never four clans, there were always ''five''. Cue Firestar realizing that [=StarClan=] is always with him, and that while he has [=StarClan's=] support and the gift of [[BackFromTheDead nine lives,]] Scourge does not.]]
* ''Literature/TheHitchhikersGuideToTheGalaxy''; the Total Perspective Vortex shows someone how insignificant they are in the universe, complete with negative effects, which are [[DrivenToMadness the destruction of the mind.]] It [[spoiler:has [[NoSell no effect]] on Zaphod because he's the most important being in the universe.]]
* ''[[Literature/NineteenEightyFour 1984]]'' averteds it. [[spoiler: Winston]] recalls a traumatic experience and bemoans that recording it has done nothing to avert the pain he feels about it.
* "Ailurophobe" by Creator/AnthonyBoucher had the main character go through this therapy to cure his morbid fear of cats (he couldn't even stand to hear words including the syllable "cat"). Under hypnosis, he realized it derived from an early childhood incident when he nearly died because of an abusive nanny named "Kitty." He was cured of fearing cats; now he had a phobia of ''women''. Ironic, since it was his fiancee who'd wanted him to get over the original phobia.
* ''Literature/InDeath'' averts this. Eve Dallas, the main character, begins the series plagued by nightmares, repressed memories, and other baggage you'd expect from a DarkAndTroubledPast. Subsequent books see her slowly get better with the help of her TrueCompanions, especially Mira and Roarke, but to date she still struggles with the lingering emotional damage.
* Creator/RobertAHeinlein's ''Literature/StarshipTroopers''. They pass off "shaking" (a condition caused when a person is under combat stress for quite a while) as normal, but they often use hypnosis for a quick cure (it appears to be mixed with efficient counselors, too.)
* Played with in the Literature/XWingSeries.
** Kell Tainer starts out both stiff with terror at the man who killed his father (who, of course, is part of the squadron he joins) and with the nasty tendency to freeze up in panic when outnumbered in combat with teammates relying on him. He gets his epiphanies, finding that one, Janson is a ReasonableAuthorityFigure rather than prone to YouHaveFailedMe moments, and two, he'd met the love of his life in the squadron and he knows what would happen if he ran in a fight. They're no longer major issues. Still, he's always going to be uncomfortable around Janson, and he still gets the shakes and anxiety when he goes into missions.
** Seemingly played straight with the team's approach to snapping Myn Donos out of his HeroicBSOD, but he still has severe issues that he only really overcomes after two more books' worth of trauma.
* Pleasantly averted in ''Literature/{{Windhaven}}''. Our heroine, learning [[AbusiveParents why]] Val One-Wing is such a prick, decides to do something about it. This "something" amounts to finding him and telling him his own life story. His response is less than enthusiastic.
-->'''Val One-Wing:''' What did you expect me to say, flyer? Did you think I'd embrace you, bed you, sing a song in praise of your understanding? What?
* In ''Literature/TheWitchlands'', Safi has huge problems with being proactive, and often prefers to ignore her problems until they become unavoidable. While she's been making strides to overcome this, when she has a near-death experience, the narrative explicitely calls it the epiphany that made her shift from being reactive to being active.

[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* ''Series/{{Charmed}}'': Issues didn't tend to stay cured, whether they were fears of losing each other, the desire for a normal life or realising that relationships require compromise to make them work.
* Alex P Keaton from ''Series/FamilyTies'', when Greg died in a car crash.
* There was an episode of a talk show that featured a girl with a fear of pickles, which affected her job performance as a waitress to the point of her refusing to serve any dish with said garnish in it to any of her customers. The host's proposed treatment was to have nearly a dozen stagehands emerge from the audience onto the stage and from each of the stage entrances, each one holding a plate with a sandwich topped in pickles and wearing the most evil shit-eating grins you've ever seen. The guest screamed hysterically and tried to escape in several different directions before she was surrounded. In psychology, this is known as flooding; surrounding a person with things they're afraid of for a few hours until the fear is extinguished. While it can work if done long enough, there's nicer ways to do it.
* ''Series/{{Wiseguy}}''. Frank [=McPike=] and Roger Loccoco decide to snap local kingpin Mark Volchek out of his phobia of death by recreating the final scene of his favourite horror movie so it has a happy ending. Mark Volchek refuses to accept this and storms out the door, only to run into someone who he thought [[TroubleEntendre had been killed]] in an earlier episode. Not surprisingly, Volchek faints. He does get better though. Somewhat.
* ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer'': Buffy has a number of EpiphanyTherapy moments:
** In the first season, she overcame her fear of the Master, by getting killed by him. Killing him in return certainly helped.
** When she immediately overcomes some issues simply because she confesses that the spell to re-ensoul Angel had truly worked and she sacrificed him anyway.
** Buffy's character arc in Season 6 is an aversion of this trope. It takes her the entire season to get over the traumas of dying, being yanked out of Paradise, and then having to claw her way out of her own grave.
* ''Series/{{Angel}}''
** Angel's decent into darkness and apathy in Season 2 is cured by [[IntimatePsychotherapy sleeping with Darla]], his sire and enemy. Angel turned evil after sleeping with Buffy, so has been avoiding sex for years. He eventually sleeps with Darla as a DespairEventHorizon but when he fails to turn evil the morning after, realizes life isn't quite as bad and gets back with his friends.
--->'''Gunn:''' So, you had an ''epiphany'', did you? So, what you just wake up and "bang"?\\
'''Angel:''' ''[smirking]'' Well, it was sort of the other way around.
** There is an episode where we see how agonizing it is for the evil Angelus to be trapped inside the brooding but heroic Angel - he screams in horror when forced to relive a night when Angel saved a puppy. He quickly gets over this problem when he remembers that he can still torment ''Angel'', no matter what happens in the outside world.
** Angel also ''have'' an epiphany that is an ''aversion'' of EpiphanyTherapy. He realizes that the fight against evil doesn't end, because there's no big win -- so you just keep fighting every day.
* When ''Series/{{Monk}}'' realized the source of his pathological hatred of nudists, he got over it. This means he doesn't impulsively and immediately accuse them of any and all crimes. He still is visibly disgusted and goes out of his way to avoid them.
* ''Series/{{MASH}}'': In ''Quo Vadis, Captain Chandler?'', Captain Chandler was in serious need of an epiphany. He doesn't get it, but another victim who was unable to save his younger brother in battle, literally went into amnesiatic shock and couldn't remember a thing. His memory only returned after Dr. Freedman, Hawkeye and B.J. hypnotise him and stage a battlefield scene. [[spoiler:Hawkeye himself, during the finale? It takes around half an hour into the episode before Dr. Freedman is able to force Hawkeye into remembering what triggered the nervous breakdown.]]
* ''Series/StarTrekTheNextGeneration'': Lt. Barclay had a paralyzing fear of transporters, as revealed in the episode "Realm of Fear". During that episode his fear is compounded when he discovers a living organism within the transporter field. The same story had O'Brien reveal that he once had a fear of spiders, but now kept a pet tarantula.
* ''Series/StarTrekDeepSpaceNine'': Avertend in "It's Only A Paper Moon". Nog is suffering from PTSD and retreats into a holosuite fantasy. While the holosuite character of Vic Fontaine does force Nog to openly confront why he just can't handle reality right now, Nog is not instantly cured, in fact he straight out admits he's not okay, "But I'm going to be".
* ''Series/DoctorWho'':
** During "Amy's Choice", an artificially induced dream shared by the Doctor, Amy and Rory helps Amy realize just how much she loves Rory. This overlaps with LoveEpiphany, and while it forces her to confront the issue it does not magically cure her emotional baggage. In fact, she generally averts this trope, as she's been in therapy for much of her life (four therapists in total! She bit all of them) because she refused to accept the Doctor was a figment of her imagination, and still hasn't gotten over her trust and abandonment issues.
** In "Vincent and the Doctor", [[spoiler:they take van Gogh to the future to see that his art will be valued in the future, and to hear how highly he's esteemed. He leaves them overjoyed, and Amy insists they immediately go back to see what more he will have painted. When they get there she finds that he still committed suicide.]]
* In ''Series/KamenRiderDouble'', [[spoiler: Shotaro]] after being driven insane with fear by the Terror Dopant, causing him to scream his head off at even the slightest noise, [[spoiler: Philip basically telling him goodbye forever while leaving him a cryptic message on how to reverse it, Shotaro not only reverts to normal, but allows him to breakthrough his instinctive fear of Ryubee/Terror, which had been planted during their first meeting and prevented him from confronting him throughout the series.]]
* ''Series/MythBusters'' host Adam Savage has struggled for years with a well-known fear of bees. Much to his annoyance, it made him the guinea pig for multiple phobia myth experiments. Then they tested a myth of bees glued to a laptop flapping their collective wings to make it fly. Working with a single bee in their lab, he learned to admire their individual strength and by the final test, he admitted being completely over his fear.
* ''Series/{{Leverage}}'': the premise of "the White Rabbit" in the episode "The White Rabbit Job" is that you can rearrange someone's personality if you just find the one defining event in their life and get them to reexamine it. [[spoiler:It works, too.]]
* ''Series/{{Bones}}'':
** Angela goes to Dr. Sweets for advice on how to deal with Hodgens now that she and he had broken up. Sweets recommended a full therapy regimen (starting with two sessions per week) but she pronounced herself "fixed" after talking with him for 2 minutes, with [[PlaceboEurekaMoment her doing most of the talking]].
** In the season 9 premiere, Brennan and Booth are barely speaking after their broken engagement (after [[SerialKiller Pelant]] blackmailed Booth into breaking it off) until Brennan finds the bar that Booth had been frequenting and meets Aldo, an ex-priest who was an army buddy of Booth's during his career as a sniper and was now a bartender. During their conversation, Aldo reminds Brennan of what Booth's Catholic faith means to him and that Booth still loves her as deeply as before. By the end of the episode, Brennan, who in the past had chafed at using the word "Faith" in any context, admits to herself and to Booth that she had absolute faith in him, and that they will work things out.
* In ''Series/RedDwarf'' it's been long established that Rimmer's neuroses are partly the fault of his emotionally distant and controlling father, who [[WellDoneSonGuy never said he was proud of him]] and [[HilariouslyAbusiveChildhood used to stretch him on a rack so he'd be tall enough to join the Space Corps]]. In the episode "The Beginning" he learns [[spoiler: that this man isn't his father at all]] and this almost instantly cures his self-doubt.
* ''Series/{{Friends}}'': The character's emotional issues - albeit treated in a light-hearted manner - are either consistently present or phased out through CharacterDevelopment. Ross's jealousy and paranoia (caused by his wife cheating on him with another woman), stick around right until the final episode. Monica's insecurity from her emotionally abusive mother improves as she becomes happier with herself after falling in love with Chandler, but she still feels she has to be perfect at everything. Meanwhile Chandler gets over his CommitmentIssues, but it takes a 4 seasons of him realizing he wants a relationship, 6 seasons of Monica supporting him and numerous episodes dedicated to his freak outs to get there.
* ''Series/{{Supernatural}}'' averts this so much it gets annoying after a while. In ''All Hell Breaks Loose'', Dean seems to be crawling out of his self-loathing pit of despair and having a bit of hope but when it comes to the next episode? He's telling Sam how the prospect of being dragged down to hell is like a light at the end of the tunnel. And in ''Dream A Little Dream Of Me'', he makes a beautiful revelation about how his Dad was an absolute arsehole but fast-forward to four episodes later and he's back to being the devoted, scared-out-of-his-mind soldier. As of late season 4 he appears to finally be thinking about making some progress, being outright told that for all his problems he doesn't have license to whine quite so much, and gently mocked for taking such a depressed mindset. It is partially valid, but the writers seem to have realized that no matter how much it is he can't keep whinging, and the multiple Epiphany Therapies may be having an effect.
* 'Series/HeadingOut'': PlayedForLaughs with a ditzy spiritualist therapist in Sue Perkins' sitcom ': "But don't worry, because your final session ends in three... two... one... CURED!"
* In ''Series/NYPDBlue'' Detective Diane Russell is convinced to go sort-of undercover, getting close to her old boyfriend who's involved with organized crime. Forcing herself to tolerate uncomfortable sexual advances brings up memories of her being molested by her father, which leads to a tear-filled breakdown. The aversion comes from that later on there are scattered mentions that she sought out professional help afterwards and is going through long-term therapy.
* ''Series/TheSopranos'': Tony frequently experiences epiphanies in therapy, but they never "take". He always reverts back to form, sooner or later.
* ''Series/HowIMetYourMother'': When Marshall's very-much-loved fiance just up and left him one night to go to San Francisco, he spent a long time crying, sitting in his apartment in his underwear, and trying to contact her. The rest of the gang supports him and does various things to try and help him get over her, but to no avail. During a talk about the matter with Ted, Marshall has an epiphany and decides that he's going to stop being so pathetic and start living again. Ted narrates that then it didn't happen, because "that's not how life works." Next morning, something reminds Marshall of Lily and he's right back to pathetic. But a couple of weeks later, he takes the first step towards moving on, and Ted narrates that the only thing that can fix a broken heart is time.
* Parodied on ''Series/MalcolmInTheMiddle''; when Hal thanks a psychiatrist for curing his sons, the guy starts spluttering that they've turned up many problems that need to be discussed - but they're out the door already.
* ''Series/{{Apocalypse}} does this to a unsuspecting volunteer named Steven.
* Subverted in ''Series/UnbreakableKimmySchmidt''. Kimmy's arc for Season 2 is realising that many of her dysfunctions are due to unresolved hostility towards her mother for [[ParentalNeglect neglecting her]] and failing to protect her from the [[SinisterMinister the Reverend]]. She finally seeks her mother out and they have [[CallingTheOldManOut a big argument]] which ends with them [[ParentsAsPeople recognising each other's positions]] and reconciling... and then Kimmy accidentally realises that her mother is also the cause of ''other'' hangups that she hadn't even thought to blame her for. She has an ImagineSpot about starting to yell at her mother over it... and then doesn't, but cordially says goodbye. Getting some long-overdue catharsis was probably necessary for her healing process, but it's not going to fix all her trauma in one go.

* In ''Theatre/NextToNormal'', Diana, who suffers from bipolar disorder and severe depression due to a long-ago traumatic incident, goes through two therapists, countless meds, a suicide attempt, and ECT before having her epiphany - the trauma she suffered couldn't be totally cured by treating her mentally; she needed to let her soul heal. This is not a straight example because Di's solution to this is to leave her family and go live with her parents for a while, to try to stand without the crutch of her husband (who has also been suppressing the same trauma), the bitterness of her daughter (who feels jaded and unloved, and scared of ending up like Di), and the constant reminder of the event that scarred her. She's clearly scared of leaving, but is convinced it's the only way she can distance herself and let go. In another twist of the trope, she had the epiphany all on her own, and acted against her therapists' pleas to continue treatment. Basically, Diana has the epiphany but is not cured. She just found the strength to try. We don't know whether it ends up working or not.

[[folder:Video Games]]
* ''[[VideoGame/TraumaCenter Trauma Center: Under the Knife 2]]''. After [[spoiler:losing his Healing Touch in the heat of an operation, and being unable to get it back]], Derek [[spoiler:goes back to his first hospital to get help from old friends. Long story short, they push him real hard and he gets it back. StatusQuoIsGod.]]
* ''VideoGame/FireEmblemAwakening'''s downplays this in supports. While issues are typically resolved by an A rank support, it doesn't truly resolve and will tend to repeat itself if the issue appears in other supports. Some of them, such as Lon'qu's gynophobia, are justified.
* In ''VideoGame/TalesOfTheAbyss'', Guy has an intense phobia of being touched by women. He eventually recalls the suppressed memory of the incident leading to his phobia and gets a little better, but he's by no means cured. He can temporarily overcome it if, say, one of his female friends is dangling over a cliff and needs someone to pull her back up, but that's it.
* In ''VideoGame/TheSuffering'', it takes Torque the length of the entire game to come to terms with his psychological issues as he slowly figures out [[KarmaMeter what sort of person he is]] and his fragmented past. Oh, and fights a giant monster representing his psychological trauma, because it's just that kind of game. Even ''then'', when the sequel rolls around, it turns out he's not actually cured, and facing the demons of his past causes a relapse. It still doesn't take years, but it's hardly an instant "have an epiphany and you're better" cure.
* ''Franchise/MassEffect''; Commander Shepard can encounter quite a number of traumatized and emotionally disturbed individuals, and has the opportunity to talk almost all of them into getting professional therapy... or [[VideoGameCrueltyPotential committing suicide]]. Shepard him/her self can be played this way, depending on the player. "I did what I had to."
* ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVII'' as a whole has a subversion.
** It's apparently played straight in the first game, where [[TheHero Cloud]], who has endured all sorts of MindRape and other horrors, has a JourneyToTheCenterOfTheMind that works as epiphany and he comes out of it in his right mind and ready to defeat [[BigBad Sephiroth]]. ...Unfortunately, as sequels to the game show, this burst of assurance is temporary and fragile, and comes crashing down times afterward, because what Cloud ''needs'' is a combination of time and skilled psychiatry. [[DeconstructedTrope It's a fairly accurate portrayal of how epiphanies in therapy work in real life]]--the patient's sudden realization may boost their mood and performance for a while, but without continued work with professionals, it doesn't last.
** Cloud's plight is made worse due to ''new'' trauma that is piled on him in the form of Geostigmata, specifically his own and that of his adopted ward Denzell. His inability to help Denzell coupled with his own agony make him feel like even ''more'' of a FailureHero. It takes [[spoiler:the need to rescue Denzell, Marlene, and other children from the Remnants, the return of his TrueCompanions (including Aerith and Zack in spirit form), the removal of his Geostigma, and the opportunity to beat the crap out of Sephiroth again]] for Cloud to ''finally'' start getting better.
* ''VideoGame/{{Psychonauts}}'' zigzags the trope. On the one hand, Raz helps quite a few characters get over their psychological hangups in a day... perhaps {{Justified|Trope}} in that he's literally entering their minds and beating said hangups to a pulp. On the other hand, some characters have ongoing problems that can't be so easily solved: Milla's nightmares (though they are at least under control), and all of the patients at Thorny Towers still seem quite unbalanced, even if they've improved somewhat.
* Averted in ''VideoGame/BaldursGateIIShadowsOfAmn''. Each of the original romanceable characters have their own issues, and it takes ''a lot'' of time (and sensible dialogue choices) for whomever you choose to deal with his/her problems, let alone move past them. If you continue the romance through ''Throne of Bhaal'', this even becomes a DefiedTrope -- [[spoiler: your love interest is forced to confront a wraith masquerading as someone from his/her past that strikes at their deepest fear or doubt.]] Some of them even say that it will take more than comforting words or a good snuggle to help them get over it.
* Zigzagged but largely falling on the side of aversion with ''VideoGame/StardewValley''. A lot of the people you meet have surprisingly deep issues, and befriending them does ''not'' magically fix them; at best, getting closer lets them open up to you more (and thus you find out more about their problems) and you can be there for them when needs be. Marrying a BrokenBird can be hit-and-miss; [[spoiler:Sebastian]] gets some much-needed direction in his life and gets some appreciation from his family for once while [[spoiler:Abigail]] finally has the freedom to follow her dream, but [[spoiler:Shane]] still suffers the consequences of [[spoiler:long-term alcoholism]].

[[folder:Visual Novels]]
* ''VisualNovel/TokimekiMemorial 4'' has [[spoiler: Okura Miyako]]. While she initially seems just fine, when the protagonists asks her out on a date, then wonders about a rabbit-doll she carries around and later makes a joke about how she'll become a great wife, due to her wonderful cooking, to some guy in the future, she completely breaks. Her dialogue revolves mostly around [[spoiler: things she and the protagonist did as kids]], showing how important is it to her. [[spoiler: Miyako breaks when she feels that the protagonist only [[PrankDate asked her out on a date as a joke]] ''and'' realizes that he has forgotten, or doesn't care about, their childhood events and that they made the rabbit-doll she carries around together. At this point, Miyako breaks and flat-out goes {{Yandere}} on the protagonist, making him fight the rabbit-doll if he goes on a date with another girl, purposefully cooks him terrible food and gives it to him to eat and overall talks in a very creepy tone of voice.]] The protagonist must date her for a prolonged time when this happens, but the big change comes in one scene where [[spoiler: Miyako lost the rabbit-doll's button eye next to the river and is frantically searching for it. The protagonist "heals" Miyako by telling her that, since they can't find the button, they should give up and rips a button off of his high school uniform and that she should use it for the doll's new eye]].
* Several times in the ''Franchise/AceAttorney'' games:
** Initial antagonist Miles Edgeworth has a near-breakdown in court (after Phoenix acquits him of a murder he's been framed for) because he's convinced he accidentally shot and killed his father fifteen years prior. Phoenix is able to demonstrate that it was Manfred von Karma, Edgeworth's mentor, and the shock makes him completely rethink his life and decide to find a way to prosecute for noble reasons.
** In ''VisualNovel/PhoenixWrightAceAttorneyDualDestinies'', Athena Cykes also has a breakdown in court because she believed she'd killed her mother -- she remembers stabbing someone in her mother's lab, at any rate. Again, Phoenix connects the clues to pin the blame on the rightful culprit, freeing both Athena and an innocent man who confessed to the crime to protect her. To increase the irony, ''Edgeworth'' was the one who pushed her until she unlocked her repressed memory of the stabbing.

[[folder:Web Comics]]
* ''Webcomic/ElGoonishShive'':
** Here is an aversion. Resident MadScientist Tedd has some severe psychological hangups as a result of [[http://www.egscomics.com/?date=2006-08-07 being teased and bullied for most of his life]] for being a "[[{{Bishonen}} girly-man]]", not to mention allegations that he's gay for his {{Heterosexual Life Partner|s}}, Elliot. Thus, despite the fact that he often goes on a GenderBender just for kicks, and the fact that he should be bisexual when in female form, [[http://www.egscomics.com/?date=2006-07-31 being intimate with boy-Grace causes him to panic even when he's transformed into a girl]]. However, when Grace figures out the source of his hangup -- which he hadn't even realized himself -- she reminds him that this realization in itself does not solve the problem:
--->'''Grace:''' Kissing boy-me was a very loving gesture, but identifying the issue doesn't instantly free you of it...
** A minor example with Susan. Her years of hating men were erased by spending one evening [[GenderSwap Gender-Swapped]]. She'd been having second thoughts before then and she'd made male friends who, Tedd's ChivalrousPervert tendencies aside, were very moral people. That night ended up being the moment she truly accepted people could be cheating jerkasses regardless of gender.
** In a light-hearted, played for laughs example, one NP story has Sarah deciding that she wants to be less concerned with nudity. Having [[InnocentFanserviceGirl Grace around]] will probably do that. Despite this, she keeps getting deeply embarrassed whenever Grace shows up topless or nude. Grace reassures her by saying that just because you want to stop feeling a certain way, feelings aren't convenient and don't just shut off like that. A cultural taboo which you've been raised with from birth is a very difficult thing to shake off psychologically.
* In ''Webcomic/QuestionableContent'', they make mention of this trope when Faye finally explains why she gets so defensive.
-->'''Faye:''' Therapy helped, but it's the equivalent of breaking your leg -- you can walk when you get out of physical therapy, but you canít run a marathon right away. I can function as a human being right now, and even have friends, but I can't handle a relationship.\\
'''Marten:''' Couldn't we just make out now and worry about everything else later?\\
'''Faye:''' Sure, if you want to trade one night of fun for me freaking out, running away, and never coming back.\\
'''Marten:''' Well shit. I was almost letting myself hope that you'd be all "Man, it sure feels good to get all that off my chest! Let's go have sex!"\\
'''Faye''': If trauma were that easily dealt with, psychologists would work pro bono.
* ''Webcomic/DomainTnemrot'' has Angel who gained suicidal thoughts while captured by Morris. Despite being free and even beating up Morris at one point, [[http://www.tnemrot.com/comic/9-12/ she still has issues]] about getting in the ring.

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* PlayedForLaughs in the ''WesternAnimation/AdventureTime'' episode "Crystals Have Power". Jake swears off violence after having a flash-back to a childhood trauma where he accidentally hurt his brother Jerome, only for his dad to tell him "You're going to hurt ''everybody''!" This hampers Jake's attempts to save Finn from some extra-dimensional crystal monsters, until Jake receives a vision of his father explaining what he meant:
-->'''Jake:''' But Dad, you said I'd hurt everybody!\\
'''Jake's Dad:''' Yeah, everybody...\\
'''Jake:''' I dunno, Dad, that doesn't really help me.\\
'''Jake's Dad:''' Everybody who is ''evil'', Jake. Try letting me finish next time, hmm, yeah?"\\
'''Jake:''' Oh. Well I'm over it, then!
* ''WesternAnimation/RoughnecksStarshipTroopersChronicles'' had Dizzy being claustrophobic. With their survival on the line, the team's resident psychic "removed" her claustrophobia and made her a badass again. It's a pretty dangerous procedure (as they point out to her before she consents to it) and they wouldn't dare try it if their lives weren't on the line. So instant psychic therapy isn't exactly an easy way out, just a fast one.
* ''WesternAnimation/TransformersAnimated'': "Thrill of the Hunt" sees ShellShockedVeteran Ratchet sits down for a long talk with Optimus, and the subject was never raised again. Then Transwarped rolls around, more traumatic FlashbackStares ensue, and it is abruptly revealed that everything is ''not'' okay.
* ''WesternAnimation/AvatarTheLastAirbender'':
** During the episode "The Beach", the villains have vented their individual examples of FreudianExcuse and are now feeling much better. So good in fact, that they gleefully trash the house and attack the guests of the cool teens who snubbed them. Interestingly enough, the only one in the group who never actually gets over the problem that gets brought up in the episode is Azula, who seemed to be completely at terms with it. [[spoiler:In the final episodes, it causes her epic VillainousBreakdown.]] Zuko, on the other hand, didn't get over his issues with that situation at the beach either. Uncle Iroh had been working on him for the entire two seasons, but he froze before taking the step that would've taken him completely through his HeelFaceTurn. He finally completes it a few episodes later.
** "The Guru". Aang, in order to master the Avatar state, has to unlock a series of chakras by letting go of various Earthly, negative emotions, such as his grief over being TheLastOfHisKind, and the fear of failure against the Fire Lord. Every one of these takes about twenty seconds. The next season shows that he hasn't truly conquered any of them. By the time of ''Legend of Korra'', we learn that he ''never'' got over his TheLastOfHisKind issues. He had three children and the only one he ''didn't'' neglect was the only airbender.
* ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons''
** The show defied this with Lisa explaining that her [[CompressedVice body image issues]] are a long-standing problem that can't be solved overnight. [[SnapBack From the next episode we never hear of them again...]]
** It's parodied in the episode where Marge is cured of her fear of flying. The therapist declares her phobia cured when they dig up one embarrassing incident from her past, and then brushes aside several much more traumatic flying-related memories ("Yeah yeah yeah, it's all a rich tapestry.") When she tries to move on to discussing the obvious marital problems Marge is having, [[HypocriticalHumor Homer barges in and ushers her out the door]].