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Anon falls in love with an unemployed stoner

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Wall of text alert, seriously. I've been a crying and shaking wreck whenever I was at home over the past few weeks and I need to vent.

I'm a 26-year-old average anon in many aspects. Games, books, anime, little social contact, awkward, no girlfriend ever (I decided to be pragmatic and take care of the sexual aspects via prostitutes) beyond 2 teenage crushes that I got over very quickly back in the day.

Thankfully I've always had one extremely understanding friend who's almost the complete opposite. 2 years older than me. Extremely extroverted and driven, constantly exploring the world and whatever new experience he can, but I'd be hard-pressed to call him a normie. He's a great guy and I like to believe he has broadened my horizons considerably. On top of that I've had a stable job for 6 years that's helped me claw my way out of complete autism during my 20s. Or maybe not, as you're about to witness

In recent times I've largely been able to pass as a functioning human and have even become slightly social and outgoing, but I still greatly value my hobbies and alone time and I tend to let people know that.
Now, that friend moved far away permanently for a job. Rationally speaking this isn't much of a problem in the digital age, but it still screwsme up a little and probably adds to my overall terrible emotional state right now.

For the past two and a half years, my friend has had a girlfriend (26 like myself) whom I've known for most of that time. They hadn't gotten along for a while already and now that he's left they've obviously broken up.

I've fallen head over heels for that woman almost out of the blue. I love her chill and gentle attitude, she's 10/10 absolutely beautiful on top, and she's in a shitty situation right now and I want to be there for her. Maybe it's been resting inside me since the beginning.
Or maybe it's not entirely my "fault". I first noticed it about a month ago when they had already broken up and there started being more contact between her and me, as friends. The way she acted towards me and the way we spoke together put a bullet straight through my heart. Many signals I believe I am picking up from her make me believe that she may be at least slightly interested in me as well, or that she might consider me once she has somewhat gotten over the last relationship.

I've told my friend about my crush and he says he doesn't mind and he's happy for me, so there's no love triangle complications involved. He even gave me a little generic advice. However...
The first issue is that I can't handle this crush reasonably at all. I'm not used to the rush of hormones and this vortex of rapidly-changing emotions and I'm currently a complete, hysterical wreck. As you can plainly see by this wall of text which is not even close to finished. I'm terribly afraid that if this doesn't work out, and there is a realistic chance, I might remain like this for the foreseeable future.

The second issue is that I'm second-guessing her signals. Simply sitting really close together, I've seen her do that with other guy friends (and it made me jealous). But then, some of it makes me a little confident, like tucking her arm into mine while walking, or texting me about how she likes me complete with blushing emoji. We've watched a movie together at her initiative. When we're among friends, she treats me no differently than others, and I can understand that if she feels anything for me she doesn't want to put it on display, but on a purely emotional level it makes me insecure.

The third issue is that I may already be coming off like a clingy idiot. After the movie I've asked her out for ice cream, and she's called it off twice. I then probably came off like I was bugging her to spend time with me, and I apologized for that. She says she's not mad, and she says she's been postponing it due to stress. I have no reason not to believe her, as I'll explain below. But this didn't really put me in a great light.
The fourth issue is a thing that I feel we're incompatible about and which I'm horribly afraid is making her like me less and less, even as a friend. My friend, and her, and the entire circle of acquaintances I've slipped into via them, they're all passionate weed users. Not me. I can't afford to even sample it for fear of having a drug test happen to me at my job at any time and getting into trouble. On top of that I've never really trusted my brain and mind to handle it well, just like I don't drink much alcohol at all. On the other hand, when she's with friends, she smokes and drinks pretty heavily, at least from what I've seen, and she can handle it.
Now of course, she's chill about it, and it doesn't come up when we spend time by ourselves. But since we watched the movie we've only ever been together in a group. And every time I'm the sober, odd one out. Of course I drink some booze to keep up at least a little, but I don't even like doing that much. And when you're mostly sober among high people, the experience for me is mildly amusing at best and pisses me off at worst. This, then, leads me to grow silent and clam up like in the worst of my autistic teenage days.
This got really bad yesterday. She invited me and kept offering me drinks, only for me to keep refusing and somewhat dampen the mood. Now I'm scared she's started to dislike me for it.
I can tell how important the experience is to her, and I would never think to try to talk her out of it. But this is a thing that I believe is pretty central to her way of life, and something I don't think we can ever share properly, even as friends.
The fifth issue is that I'm not sure how, or if, to confront her and talk openly to her about any of this.
I'm certain she's not nearly over the previous 2.5-year relationship with my friend, plus she's in the middle of preparing for a move (not one that would keep us apart), plus she's broke and unemployed and will have to hunt for a job soon. So as I've said above, I'm certain she's under a lot of stress right now (so I can believe her for not feeling like spending time alone with me, see 2) and maybe that's one reason she gets particularly drunk and stoned currently. So I don't want to bother her with my BS. On the other hand, I can't continue as an emotional mess like this myself, and I really want to talk to her about the situation.
It's actually pretty clear-cut. We're finally going for ice cream next week, and I'm going to find a quiet moment for us and tell her about my feelings. The rough draft of how I want to put it is

>The more we've gotten to know each other over the past weeks, the more I've grown to like you. I like spending time with you and talking to you, I want to be there for you, and I think you're beautiful. I like you as more than a friend. I know you're probably under a ton of stress, with the breakup and with moving, but it's very important to me that you know how I feel, and I don't want there to be misunderstandings between us.

I'm not even going to bring up any of the drug-related stuff described above. I want her to know what I feel and with luck I'll learn how she feels. Then we can tackle the other things one way or another.

I'm just scared about her rejecting me and I don't know what to do if that happens, but that's just part of every crush, isn't it? Plus I'm scared about how she feels about me after yesterday's shitty evening, though I've apologized and she's known for a long time I'm the introverted, no-drugs type. I think it's best if I treat that as forgiven and forgotten, at least for now.

Wish me luck or tell me what a fuckup I am, anons. Thanks for reading and thanks for letting me vent.
Jesus cowboy, you wrote a lot. My suggestion is just letting it pass, just a simple crush. Keep going the pace you're going and if some thing happens, great. If not, fine, don't let this corrupt your life.
Thread posts: 7
Thread images: 1

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