I can understand your confusion and dilemma dear, you feel attracted and attached towards this friend of yours at the same time you have this fear that what if this feeling is not permanent, yes?
Also you mentioned, getting into dating could "tie you down", I am thinking what makes you say that.
Does it mean, that committing to a serious relationship will be a barrier to explore more people, more experiences?
As far as your age, there is no correct age when we can say, all the decisions are going to be right from now on you know, there is never a guarantee.
You can give this some time, as she is your friend, hang out with her, spend time together and see if you feel the same way or things change in time.
the decision is yours to make
If you need to discuss this over a session, please connect with experts on the platform.