This article is a contribution to the professional understanding of patient involvement. The findings of an explorative study of the specific expectations and experiences of involvement in priorities and decisions concerning treatment of hospitalized patients with affective disorders are described. The purpose is to achieve a better understanding of patients’ expectations to their level of involvement. The empirical data are collected through three individual interviews and analyzed through a Ricoeur-inspired process. Although patients with an affective disorder find it difficult to describe their specific expectations of involvement, the analysis shows that: To be listened to, To experience attention and To hand over responsibility are very important enablers of the experience of involvement. Patients expect to be met by a care ethical rationale in a dialectical division of responsibility, where the professionals bear the responsibility of discovering the patients’ need for treatment, help and care throughout the hospitalization.

Keywords: Attention, dialectical division of responsibility, patient involvement, phenomenological-hermeneutic interpretation, responsibility