Yes to the Culture Chock books and a SIM card.
I am wondering what exactly is unique that you so strongly dislike about Spain.
To be fair, I did say that I'd send my daughter in that situation, and I didn't want to say what I thought of it. To start, I'd like to point out that I'm not a prissy traveler. I've been to many countries/places and I've liked them all except Spain. I've ridden on a bus in Belize with more farm animals riding inside than people. I've urinated in the designated hole in the floor on a moving train, and was proud I managed to not get my shoes dirty, including flushing. On another train, the toilet had flushing instructions in four languages, none of them English. I only mention it because that was a very "You're not in Kansas anymore" moment. I've eaten food from a street vendor when he wouldn't take my money because I was his first foreigner/white person to buy. My absolute favorite mode of transportation is subways, and I try to behave as local, non-tourist as I can.
My trip to Spain was in 1990. So that was a long time ago, but also recent enough that should have been things like payphones on major streets. About half of what annoyed me, wouldn't have been annoying except Spain is supposed to be a first world country. I hadn't been that thrilled with the idea of going to Spain. My parents told me to not go there. When mom was pregnant with me they were briefly trapped in Madrid because of the annual Transportation Strike which was really people taking extra vacation time. They were able to get out eventually on military transport, but it took some finagling because they'd shipped dad's uniform home. But, I was travelling with a friend from Sweden and two of her friends. They wanted the beach in Barcelona. So, I went along. The beach was topless, so I didn't have my usual security things on me. On the walk to the beach I noticed air-temperature, uncovered dead fish being sold right next to fruit and the flies having a party. The beach was filthy. On the walk leaving the beach to the Hostel, my key to the train locker was stolen. You are thinking 'Stuff gets stolen anywhere'. And, that is true, I get that. But, in any other first world country you can quickly find a phone to call the police to say, "Hey watch Locker 217 a thief is on his way." The police station was in the same building and not far from the air/train lockers. But, not in Barcelona. There were payphones, many of them, All vandalized. I was told this was done by the employees of the company that had the phone monopoly. They had these storefronts setup where ordinary people had to go to make a call, and paid exorbitant prices to do so. We also couldn't get a store to even let us pay to use their phone to call the police. They seemed scared like they would get in trouble. This was 1990 in Western Europe. I also later learned that the boulevard was touted to tourists, and everyone knew that thefts were rampant. So, the thief got everything. My travelling companions paid for my hostel stay that night. Remember those old movies where they had kids selling paper on street corners yelling, "Paper! Get Your Paper Here! Read all about it!" Imagine the same thing only substitute "Heroin! Get Your Heroin Here!" It was 24/7. I could not make this up. So, now I'm trapped in the country while I get my documents back in order. Part of which was the Euro-rail which involved getting in a help-window line and waiting. About half the time the person would say, "NO!" before you even said anything. It wasn't done just to me, seemed to me about 50% chance. Only thing you could do would be to get in another line and wait again. The people seemed to be the normal mix of nice/not nice. But, they seemed ... glum. I can't describe it more than that. Sometimes I had to go to an office in the outer area of the city. The street signs had been put on the buildings many many many years ago. When the buildings were redone, they didn't put the street label back up. So, at any given intersection, you were likely to have only one street labeled. So, you'd have to go to another corner and hope that it wasn't the same street labeled, and then another corner to know both where you were on the map and which direction you were standing. I'd ask people for directions, in Spanish. 80% of the time, they'd lie. I remember thinking "I've heard that New Yorkers will tell you what to do with it. But, at least they don't lie". Years later I visited NYC, and they were nice. But, at least the people in Barcelona were pretty consistent about it, so I'd do the opposite of what they said, and I'd get to where I was going. In about 6 days I had all the paperwork taken care of, and I left the country. At the border you have to change trains because they don't have the same tracks. I am using the payphone to call my parents to them I left the country. Payphones make international calls especially hard because they might add a 9 or an extra 1 or '01' to the 1's and 0's you needed at the beginning anyway. A train station worker was trying to tell me how it would work and I tried that, and it didn't work. I knew the likely possibilities so I was trying those. Just as the phone was connecting, the train worker clicked the phone to hang it up, since I dared to try something else. My mother heard it ring once, and then disconnect. She told my Dad, "(Daughter) has left Spain." She'd had no way of knowing.
About 5 years later, my boss gets married and for their honeymoon an Uncle loans him a nice Condo that he owns in a very posh area on the coast of Spain. It wasn't neat Barcelona. He shows me photos of them eating at a nice restaurant near the condo. Dark wood wine storage is behind them at their table, a nice painting seen on the side of the photo. I asked what those white things were in the top of the photo. He flushed. The restaurant stored raw meat hanging from the ceiling in the dining room. Hanging down from the meat was white twine which ended in Dixie cups to catch the blood.