Domestic Violence Victoria spokeswoman Alison Birchall said family violence figures were in reality higher and a stigma of victim blaming meant the crime often went unreported.
Victims also found the judicial process of making a statement and attending court daunting, while others risked putting themselves in more danger by trying to leave, she said.
“There’s a lot of pressure still on victims of domestic violence to put up with the violence, to not split up the family and to maintain the status quo,” Ms Birchall said.
Violence affected people from all backgrounds regardless of their level of education or socio-economic status, she said, and support services typically saw a rise in demand over the summer holiday period.
“Everyone has the right to live a life free of family violence,” she said.
“Often it’s not just Christmas itself, often it’s the period after Christmas where the woman has resolved to hold things together until Christmas so the kids can have some sort of Christmas, and then it’s just after Christmas they decide to seek help.”