I partially disagree with Chris Barnes. I don't think you should just had the gun over and expect her to suddenly be proficient in the second that she needs to be. Guns ARE easy to operate, once you learn. But I have had people time and again just look at a gun befuddled and nervous, and they ask, "What do I do? How do I hold it? Is there a safety? Do I just pull the trigger?" Although, I am very suspicious that Mr. Barnes didn't mean it LITERALLY, given that he is pro-teaching basics
BTW, Mr. Barnes, congrats on your girl learning
Anyhoo, back to the idea of an untrained person using a gun effectively for self defense... Arming a woman (or man) without training for technique and MINDSET can be disastrous. I'd be so worried about someone disarming her and using the gun against her and who knows who else.
If she won't "go there" with guns, what about a Taser? The C2 Taser runs about $360, including case, extra barb/battery unit, and practice unit.