Hampster, I probably should let my wife be writing this ,but she's busy elsewhere. She carry's/uses both a Ruger LC9 and Khar CM9 and has no issues with recoil. She isn't real fond of the trigger pull on the LC9 as it is quite long and a little heavy. However, from a comfort standpoint, it has a good feel. My input here is to quote a gun writer on the LC9, it feels like a well used bar of soap! In other words, it has no sharp edges, everything is smooth and rounded. The Khar on the other hand has a better trigger pull, more like double action pull on a J frame Smith. The Khar comes from the factory very tight and will require a couple hundred rounds through it before the slide and recoil spring break in making it a bit difficult for a woman to manipulate the slide at first. However, anyone could probably use 100 rounds of practice anyway.
The Ruger and Khar are being used for conceal carry. A large frame might be more comfortable to use though. The larger pistol would be heavier as well as a little more grip for her to hold on to. These two things combined make felt recoil appear less. My wife went through school for her concealed carry permit using a Walther 99 40 cal. but during the class, she got to shoot several other pistols and ended up getting the Springfield XD 40 cal. She takes it with her at times in a purse/fanny pack and has it here at the house for self defense. (I inherited the Walther).
If there is a gun store in your area that offers shooting on site, you may be able to handle and shoot several different pistols that would aid in her decision.
Last edited by memtb; February 5, 2013 at 12:58 AM.