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Tough Topics

This guide offers local services and resources covering a variety of community needs, including suicide, substance abuse, sexual assault, gender identity, as well as many others.

How to Navigate This Page

Hello! You have found the Mental Health and Suicide Resources for youth and young adults. The links in each of the boxes to the right (web) or below (mobile) will lead you to resources and support for mental and behavioral health questions. 

If you are an adult seeking resources for a young adult in your life, please visit the Parents and Caregivers section of the guide.

If you or someone you know is experiencing a crisis, please do not hesitate to call the 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline, or call Colorado Crisis Services at 1-844-493-TALK (8255) or text "TALK" to 38255. These numbers will connect you to a safe and confidential crisis services by trained mental health professionals.

From the PPLD Collection

I'm Suicidal, Now What?

According to the Centers for Disease Control, suicide is the third leading cause of death for young people between the ages of ten and twenty-four. People who try to take their lives usually do not want to die, but they see no alternatives to stop their endless mental and emotional suffering. This resource educates teens about risk factors, suicidal thoughts, and how to cope with them. Through medication, counseling, and other tools, most people who seriously consider suicide are able to recover and go on to lead healthy, adaptive lives


Explore the issue of suicide with expert opinions in a pro/con format and encourage critical thinking. Includes discussion questions, bibliography and respected sources.

Cracked, Not Broken

At 19 years old, Kevin attempted to take his own life by jumping off the Golden Gate Bridge - a distance which took four seconds to fall. Recently diagnosed with bi-polar disorder, Kevin had begun to hear voices telling him he had to die, and days before his attempt, he began to believe them. The fall would break his body, but not his spirit.

Hello, Cruel World

Celebrated transsexual trailblazer Kate Bornstein bravely and wittily shares personal and unorthodox methods of survival in an often cruel world in this much-needed unconventional approach to teenage suicide prevention for marginalised youth who want to stay on the edge, but alive. Features 101 alternatives to suicide that range from the playful (moisturise), to the irreverent (disbelieve the binary), to the highly controversial (get laid, please). Bornstein fervently encourages readers to give themselves permission to unleash their hearts' desires.

Eight Stories Up

Part of the Adolescent Mental Health Initiative series of books written specifically for teens and young adults, Eight Stories Up offers hope to young people who are at risk of suicide, extending a lifeline of support and guidance that can save their lives.

Dead Serious : breaking the cycle of teen suicide

Learn how to break the cycle of teen suicide by recognizing the warning signs, encouraging conversation, and setting up a network of peers and trusted adults who can listen and, if necessary, connect to medical health professionals.

Brave Face: A Memoir

'I wasn't depressed because I was gay. I was depressed *and* gay.' Shaun David Hutchinson was nineteen. Confused. Struggling to find the vocabulary to understand and accept who he was and how he fit into a community in which he couldn't see himself. The voice of depression told him that he would never be loved or wanted, while powerful and hurtful messages from society told him that being gay meant love and happiness weren't for him. A million moments large and small over the years all came together to convince Shaun that he couldn't keep going, that he had no future. And so he followed through on trying to make that a reality. Thankfully, Shaun survived, and over time, came to embrace how grateful he is and how to find self-acceptance and that it doesn't matter how others define us, only how we define ourselves. In this courageous and deeply honest memoir, Shaun takes readers through the journey of what brought him to the edge, and what has helped him truly believe that it does get better.

Overcoming Suicidal Thoughts for Teens

"Suicide is the second leading cause of death among teens in the US, and the need for effective prevention has never been greater. Written by two adolescent suicide experts, this gentle and effective guide will help teens overcome suicidal thoughts by reducing emotional pain, increasing hope, and building meaningful connections. Readers will learn specific skills grounded in evidence-based cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), including how to establish safety plans, identify and manage intense emotions, limit stress, find purpose, and ultimately take control of their suicidal thoughts to move forward into a more optimistic and hopeful future"--

How Not to Kill Yourself

"Humor and logic are used to provide practical mental health and self-care strategies to creative people suffering from depression and suicidal ideation"

Recognizing the Warning Signs of Suicide

Source: Well Cast

Local Resources

Below the Surface

Below the surface is a crisis text line for teens that recognizes the fine line between feeling OK and not OK. It's free, confidential, and, since every struggle is different, personal. All counselors are trained to help texters deals with their unique situation.

Click Here for more information on the program and FAQs.

Just text TALK to 38255 or call 1-844-493-8255 if you are unable to text to connect with a counselor.

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