Today I took a woman shooting who had not fired a gun in 20 years, and before that she had limited experience going shooting with her ex-husband, and shooting 22 rifles when she was a girl under her fathers and brothers supervision . When she was married she had the use of a full size 38 or 357 revolver supplied by your husband, but when they broke up she didn't have that gun anymore . When her father passed away, he left her a K frame Smith & Wesson police style revolver . That was basically almost identical to the gun her ex-husband had given her for her use. So she probably has "owned" a full-size 38/ 357 revolver for a dozen years in total . After a basic refresher course on the operation of a double action/single action revolver (including some dry firing ) I challenged her to use the gun with six rapid shots at a full-size man shape target at only 5 yards . Although I asked her to shoot as fast as she could and still expect to hit the body of the target, she took about 20 seconds to fire each of the first three shots, and then she put her hands down shaking because she couldn't hold the gun up that long, and the recoil had disturbed her . PS the gun was still loaded with the full power defensive loads that her father had in the gun when he last loaded it 40 years ago . And one of those rounds was a dud, so only five rounds fired . After a brief rest she reacquired her grip on the weapon, concentrated on the sights again , and very slowly fired 2 more rounds ---probably taking 30 seconds to shoot those last two . The man sized target had been hit twice once in the shoulder and once on the edge of the chest off to the side . Three other shots were complete misses. ----------------- The lesson to take away from this experience is : Don't assume that all "gun owners" are skilled with a handgun and can effectively use it in a self-defense situation .