He's afraid of what will happen throughout the year. What if he wants to move to another country? What if things go horribly and they break up? What if he hurts her? What if a relationship holds him back from doing all the things he wants to accomplish?
The operative words being "WHAT IF?"
I totally understand where he's coming from. I've totally been in that boat. In college, I was going to transfer to NYU and then I decided not to because what if? I was also going to study abroad, but I decided not to because I was doing comedy all the time and what if?
In all my years of circling the sun, the other end of "What if..." is usually some negative road block. It's never, "WHAT IF I FALL IN LOVE?" or "WHAT IF THINGS WORK OUT WONDERFULLY AND NYU IS AWESOME AND IT GETS ME A TV WRITING JOB?" I truly don't understand why something horrible is always at the other end of the bridge. I've personally never crossed a bridge (both figuratively and literally) and found something horrible on the other side! Except maybe traffic, if we're talking literally. That's never a fun surprise.
Basically, what I'm saying, is that fear is a useless piece of shit.
For that guy, he'd love to date my friend (he actually would, he's a pretty decent guy) but he's young and afraid. He has all these goals and plans for himself, general things he'd like to accomplish - but since when is it so difficult to do those things with someone you enjoy spending time with by your side? He never once considered that things might really work out with her and that she might want to follow him anywhere he went.
Sure, sometimes that's not going to be the case and company won't follow you anywhere, and relationships don't work out but - excuse the cliche - at least you took a chance on something. It sucks to go through difficult shit, but that shouldn't prevent us from actually doing things and taking risks. In my opinion, it's always better to have loved and lost (or tried and failed) than to never have loved (or tried) at all. Otherwise, nobody would ever get a dog. Or befriend another human being. News flash, EVERYBODY DIES. Yet we invest in other humans anyway.
This is just one example. So many people I know - including this old gal - are afraid to take risks because they're afraid of the outcome. Or because of something way in the future that MAY OR MAY NOT happen. Or because they're making just making assumptions instead of taking risks.
This is coming from someone who regularly chooses staying inside over leaving the house because WHAT IF it's a terrible time/I waste money/something bad happens/something good comes on TV and I didn't DVR it.
Fuck the fear. Let's go out and take some risks. Let's tell people how we feel! Let's find a new signature scent! Let's step outside of our homes instead of staying inside all day! Let's GET SHIT DONE.