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The external conflict of the story is the fact that Arnold Friend, who appears to be sexual predator of some sort, seeks out Connie to take her from her parents' home. The reason he succeeds is because of Connie's internal conflict. Her internal conflict stems from the fact that she has no sense of who she is, and only measures herself by gauging other's opinions. She "[checks] other people's faces to make sure her own [is] all right" and has a history of letting boys have their way with her. Because of this deep insecurity, Connie is not able to resist Arnold Friend and leaves with him in his car.
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