Okay I may have a strange issue. I can suspend my session and the computer will suspend as normal i.e I can press my power button and the computer will come back to my session. However, when I leave the computer for an extended amount of time it will not come out of being suspended. The computer will cold boot. I've tried looking through similar questions and can not find this exact same issue.
I suppose it depends on what you mean by "an extended amount of time".
Suspending your computer puts it in a low-power mode, but not a no-power mode. The low-power is used to keep the contents of your RAM memory intact.
On my computer I can suspend for about a day and a half. The lights on my computer are different from when the computer is on or off.
If I need to put the computer to sleep for a day or more I can use hibernate instead. It writes the contents of RAM to your swap partition (assuming you have one) and then turns the computer off completely. It takes a long time to write everything to disk and to boot and recover from disk so it might not be worth the time and effort over saving everything and shutting down. I don't do it often.
will attempt to hibernate your computer.
Hibernation is harder for Linux to do on some computers so it no longer appears in the menus for 12.04, but if it works for you consistently it can be reenabled. See How to enable hibernation in 12.04? for instructions.