Young people/teens can face an overwhelming amount of stress these days, with concerns about school grades, the future, relationships, parents, and peer pressure. These issues in conjunction with the changes that are occurring in their growing body including a surge of hormones may leave both teens and their caregivers at a loss on how to negotiate this challenging time. Sometimes it can be difficult to recognize the difference between “normal” adolescent behavior versus someone who needs additional support because of a mental health issue.

The TELL Lifeline is here to listen to parents, teachers, and teens who need a safe place to talk about any of these concerns.

Mental health issues

Depression is a serious matter and can happen at any age. It is a time for those who are living with this mental health issue to seek necessary support.

Depression is an epidemic among college students. Some of the statistics:


The feelings of isolation, hopelessness, or anger do not have to control your life. You can make an appointment with one of our TELL therapists for face-to-face counseling or call the TELL Lifeline for a listening ear.

For more information on depression and other mental health issues please check out the following websites:

For youth/teens

Beyondblue’s youth program, Youthbeyondblue, aims to empower young people aged 12–25, their friends and those who care for them to respond to anxiety and depression. We support and promote environments and settings that build on strengths of young people and respond to ongoing change.

Brief overview of common mental health issues that affect/impact youth and links to other resources with more specific information for each issue.

YoungMinds offers information to young people and children about mental health and emotional well-being.

Affordable Colleges Online offers a wide range of resources for college students, including a mental health services guide providing an in-depth look at the most common issues among college students, how to identify those issues, and, perhaps most importantly, when and how to get help. Key mental health and related concerns highlighted in the guidebook include: anxiety and stress, depression, alchohol and substance abuse, PTSD, and eating disorders.

For parents and caregivers

A parents guide to anxiety and depression in young people

A Canadian organization that is committed to creating and disseminating the highest quality mental health information (products and training programs), addressing the needs of youth (ages 12 to 25 years), families, educators, health providers, policy makers and others.



It can be helpful to think of a spectrum of experience from exclusively gay to exclusively straight with many people in between. Sometimes people who feel equally attracted to men and women and have relationships with both, choose to place themselves in between and may identify as bisexual.

The three main factors are sexual attraction, sexual behavior and identity. For most people the factors go together in a congruent way. This means that people tend to behave sexually in line with their sexual feelings, i.e. People tend to be sexually active with people they are attracted to.

However, sexual identity and behavior may be quite fluid over a period of time and may not always coincide with each other as people’s feelings can change.

Applying labels to people is not necessarily an accurate way of describing them. There may be phases in a person’s life when their sexual feelings and behavior are very clearly described as gay or straight. However, at other times, labeling them as so does not fit.

Click here to download a list of of resources on youth LGBTQ.


Sometimes shortened to Trans or TG are people whose psychological self (“gender identity”) differs from the social expectations for the physical sex they were born with. To understand this, one must understand the difference between biological sex, which is one’s body (genitals, chromosomes, etc.), and social gender, which refers to levels of masculinity and femininity. Often, society mixes sex and gender, viewing them as the same thing. But, gender and sex is not the same thing. For example, a female with a masculine gender identity or who identifies as a man.

Sometimes used as an umbrella to describe anyone whose identity or behavior falls outside of stereotypical gender norms. Being transgender does not imply any specific sexual orientation (attraction to people of a specific gender.) Therefore, transgender people may additionally identify as straight, gay, lesbian, or bisexual.

For parents

A multimedia guide that offers practical advice to families of young gender diverse people, same-sex attracted and bisexual people, and those who are questioning their sexuality or gender identity.

Gender Spectrum provides education, training and support to help create a gender sensitive and inclusive environment for all children and teens. Has monthly call-in support for parents and online forum.

For youth/teens

Gender Spectrum provides education, training and support to help create a gender sensitive and inclusive environment for all children and teens. Has online forum for teens to chat with other transgender teens.

Founded in 1998 by the creators of the Academy Award®-winning short film TREVOR, The Trevor Project is the leading national organization providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) young people ages 13-24.

College students who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning students may have a harder time than others adjusting to their new environment. This guide was created to help LGBTQ students understand how many campuses are helping to make the college experience more welcoming and supportive.

Body images/ED

Whatever the symptoms, you know something is going on with your child and that it may be a problem with their body image. If you are concerned about your child’s health, please take a look at the websites below.

For parents/caregivers

Information about eating problems, the signs and symptoms and when/where to get help.

NEDA supports individuals and families affected by eating disorders, and serves as a catalyst for prevention, cures and access to quality care.

Many resources and information about helping someone with an eating disorder and offers advice for parents, family members, and friends.

For teens/young people

Proud2BMe is an online community created by and for teens. We cover everything from fashion and beauty to news, culture, and entertainment—all with the goal of promoting positive body image and encouraging healthy attitudes about food and weight.

Wealth of information about eating disorders and a supportive forum for those who are struggling with this issue.


Bullying is unwanted aggressive direct or overt behavior among school-age kids that involves a real or perceived power imbalance. This behavior is repeated or has the potential to be repeated by an individual or a group of individuals.

Bullying impacts everyone: bystanders; the one who is bullied; the one who is bullying; and school staff. Calling the TELL Lifeline and talking with a phone counselor about your experience with bullying  is one way that may help you feel less alone.  Some schools here in Japan have policies regarding bullying which might be beneficial in you gaining even more support.

Bullying can take several forms including:

For parents

Website created around the documentary released in 2013 that deals with bullying and the impact on those that bully, those who have been bullied, the bystanders, schools, and families.

PACER’s National Bullying Prevention Center actively leads social change, so that bullying is no longer considered an accepted childhood rite of passage. PACER provides innovative resources for students, parents, educators, and others, and recognizes bullying as a serious community issue that impacts education, physical and emotional health and the safety and well-being of students.

For teens/youth

Website created around the documentary released in 2013 that deals with bullying and the impact on those that bully, those who have been bullied, the bystanders, schools, and families.

A resource that presents strategies and informative information about bullying including cyberbullying.

This site for teens offers advice on topics like online safety, social networking, and cyberbullying.

Created by and for teens, this website is a place for junior and high school students to find ways to address bullying, to take action, to be heard and to own an important social cause.

You can watch videos of this year’s Anti-bullying Video Contest here.

Substance abuse and Addiction

According to the American organization SAMHSA (Substance Abuse And Mental Health Services), substance abuse and addictions is defined as follows:

The misuse and abuse of alcohol, over-the-counter medications, illicit drugs, and tobacco that affect the health and well-being of millions of Americans.

In a recent survey carried out it was determined that:

For parents

Find the latest science-based information about the health effects and consequences of drug abuse and addiction and resources for talking with kids about the impact of drug use on health on the National Institute of Drug Abuse website. is a professional webguide that can connect addicts and families with recovery and treatment options. As you may know, over 20 million people in the United States have some sort of addiction, and over one hundred people die from drug overdoses every day. Our goal is to help these individuals and their families by providing them with information and support on substance abuse, addiction, and recovery options.

For teens/youth

Too Smart To Start, is a website on avoiding underage alcohol use and its consequences

Welcome to the NIDA for Teens website, a project of the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), National Institutes of Health (NIH). Created for junior and high school students and their teachers, this website provides accurate and timely information for use in and out of the classroom.

Alcohol Rehab Guide are a new online resource that connects alcoholics and their families with the help they need to conquer this disease. Among youth, alcohol is the most commonly abused substance – causing enormous health and safety risks. Their goal is to help these teens and young adults by providing them with information on the signs of an alcohol addiction, the effects and the support options for those involved.

Self harm

Self-harm is when you hurt yourself as a way of dealing with very difficult feelings, old memories, or overwhelming situations and experiences. The ways you hurt yourself can be physical, such as cutting yourself. They can also be less obvious, such as putting yourself in risky situations, or not looking after your own physical or emotional needs.

For parents