I was watching a video the other night on the topic of what gun a woman should buy. The suggestions were almost all dinky little pistols in .380, and .38 Special.
The main reason for their suggestions was that women don't have the strength to work the slide.
My response to that is so what?
I would rather have a big gun that is a bear to work but is easy to shoot and has a better chance of ending the fight than a little dinky gun that is easy to work but that is difficult to shoot and of a marginal caliber.
If this is a gun for your wife to use while you are at work, load it for her. Keep it safe, but keep it loaded. All she has to do at that point is retrieve it and put it on target. (Of course even better is if she can keep it on her person.)
There are gadgets and techniques to overcome the difficulty of racking the slide and I've found that most guns will run just fine, or sometimes even better, with a lighter recoil spring.
Also, a good full sized revolver is not a bad choice if you can deal with the double action trigger. Much better than a little snub for sure.
Of course, practice practice practice. I bet that many women that are steered to the dinky guns could learn the proper technique to overcome any strength differences and work a full-sized pistol just fine.