May never need the 357 shells the 38's should be plenty, and hopefully she never needs to fire it for protection. It really is a shame our country is going this way. I agree it looks like a really nice conceal carry gun.
The 38 spl does not have that much energy in a 4" barrel, and you will lose a lot of velocity and energy with a short barrel snubby. The guidelines of most in defensive shooting is the ammo should produce at least 400 ft/lbs of energy at the muzzle - this rule changes with 44 spl and 45 ACP due to the diameter and weight of the bullets. If I had to shoot someone in self defense (they may be high on drugs or are at least very determined), I would prefer a 357 mag to a 38 spl, but I would choose a magnum load that is NOT likely to exit the perp. Check out the balistics of the 38 and 357 mag on the web realizing that most of the published balistics are from a 4" vented barrel. IMO, a 9mm with +P ammo (not all 9mm are approved for +P and very few for +P+) or a 44 spl are the minimum that should be used for personal defense. Keep in mind that you must be able to consistantly hit your target with your firearm/ammo selection.