A Hair Stylist lives with his boyfriend next to his ex-wife, shares custody of the kids: “She’s always knew I was gay, it was never a secret”

At the age of 36 Eran Waizman is already a famous hairstylist in his hometown, has five kids with his ex-wife (now neighbor) and plans another one with his current boyfriend, who co-parent the kids: “The children go from house to house freely, ” he says, “for them it is the most natural thing.”

Eran Waizman, a 36-year-old hair stylist from Ness Ziona, managed to get through a whole and rather not simple life, but somehow he managed to make the most of what life brought him. He grew up in the shadow of his mother’s illness, later diagnosed as bipolar. She was the one who forced him to discover independence and great strength from an early age. “My mother was not diagnosed when we were kids, and we never understood why she would be in bed for days and what her changing of moods meant,” Waizman says.

When he was 16, while bringing his mother to a treatment at the Dizengoff Center in Tel Aviv, he was discovered by a modeling agent. As part of his modeling work he met his first boyfriend, and they stayed together for about a year. Surprisingly, through this same boyfriend, Waizman met Dikla, who later became his wife and with whom he brought five children into the world. “I was never in the closet, my wife knew it too,” Waizman declares.

Thus, at the age of 20, he married and became a father (his eldest son is now 16). He began his career in the world of hair styling through a friend of Dikla’s and started working as a hairdresser’s assistant. “I needed work to provide for my family and that was how I started.” He studied the work and began to discover independence, to the point of traveling to London to specialize in the field.

At the age of 27, and with no help from anyone else, Waizman opened his own business in Ness Ziona. The routine continued, and by the age of 30, Weizmann was already a father of five kids. “I always knew I wanted many kids,” he says with a smile. Toward the age of 30, things changed in a relationship that was dying out, and he took some time for himself and moved to Tel Aviv for six months. “It was a time that I tried and experienced everything I wanted,” he said, but emphasizes that he maintained close contact with his children. “They were also the thing that worried me most and was in front of me all the time,” he says.

In Tel Aviv, he had a relationship with a handsome young man who he met through a dating site and experienced the gay nightlife on a daily basis. “The party world in the community can go beyond the bounds of good taste,” Waizman says, “because people in the community go into this loop that can last years, and chase only after their appearance: i.e. that hot guy at the party and the desire to lose control. To enjoy life in this singled out way seems shallow to me when it’s by itself.”

After six months he abruptly finished the Tel Aviv chapter in his life, returned to Ness Ziona and gave his marriage another chance. A couple of years later his relationship ended officially. By chance, his good friend Meir also broke up with his boyfriend after a long relationship.

“He was a good friend of mine for 8 years, and there was nothing between us except friendship,” Waizman says. The relationship between the two became romantic, and almost immediately, they moved in together. Today the two have bought a penthouse apartment in Ness Ziona, and Meir is working on being a father too. “Relationship is first and foremost a good friendship,” says Eran.

How did he accept your children?

“Meir took on the role of father so much that he goes to the parents’ meetings of the kids’ school. They call him several times a day. For them it is the most natural thing, he acts like a father for about everything.”

How did your family accept your relationship?

“My father had a bit of a hard time at first, and it’s okay, you have to understand that people take time, but now he’s accepting. My brothers surprised me too, and whoever I thought would be less receptive actually embraced this relationship.”

With Dikla, his ex-wife, he maintains good contact to this day, and she is also his neighbor. “The children go from house to house freely, and she enjoys life and is happy.” With his mother he’s in close contact as well, and he even helps her financially. During the interview she calls and he promises to visit her despite the late hour. In the meantime Meir stays with the children, and he shows me pictures from the penthouse they are renovating now.

“It’s important for me to convey the message that you can grow and learn from every situation, no matter where you came from and what the opening data were,” he notes.

Waizman is planning to open more branches under his name in Tel Aviv and to develop. “I wouldn’t want to become a national chain, but a quality and intimate hairstyling boutique, so two more branches are enough for me,” he says. In addition, Waizman is building a large complex in Ness Ziona, which will include, besides hair styling, other beauty treatments in one place, including hair removal, Botox, aesthetic treatments and the like.

“I always knew that what I wanted would happen,” Waizman concludes. “You have to always look ahead, and I never stop chasing the next good thing because it will not happen otherwise, and the best is still ahead.”