This essay shows the effect of the systemic transformation on the role and place of women in society in post-war Poland. Relations between the socialist state and women were dynamic and changed over time. In the first post-war period, many women hoped that the new political order would improve their lives. The industrialization of the country led to the professional activation of women and changed their places of residence, social positions and lifestyles. However, the more the ideology of social justice proclaimed by the state differed from everyday experience, the more often the attitudes of women, as well as the rest of society, shifted from support to criticism. In the 1980s, a large part of the opposition and the Solidarity movement was composed of women, but there were also patriarchal relationships in those structures.