"Certainly the holidays can bring additional stress to families, but we do know that domestic violence is intentional. There are a lot of people that have stress during the holiday and they don't chose to abuse their partner," said Kim Kempf, YWCA.
But things were a little different for Amy Moore of Springfield, she recalls being abused by her boyfriend during Thanksgiving dinner last year.
"We were sitting at a table and he got mad because something wasn't right, i don't remember anymore. He got up and just started hitting me right there and wouldn't stop, and nobody else tried to stop him, they just all watched," said Amy Moore.
Moore was able to seek help from a shelter, but she still felt helpless after the abuse.
"It made me feel bad, but I couldn't really do anything about it. I was real sick and my eyes were black and blue, I could barely open my mouth it was so swollen," said Moore.
Domestic violence is an issue that happens every day of the year.
But when the holidays hit, the St. Joseph Police Department sees an influx of calls.
"Domestic violence are a priority call for us, so if we get a call of domestic violence it's put at the top of our list to have officers respond too," said Sgt. Jennifer Protzman.
And with contributing factors of families gathering, extra time off work, financial stress and sometimes alcohol, holiday related stress forces individuals and families to cope differently.
"Although we do tend to see a slight increase, I think it's under reported. The holidays are a family time, and people want it to be a happy time for them and they don't want the police involved," said Sgt. Protzman.
Experts recommend having a plan in place, make sure children have a safe place if violence breaks out.
According to the National Resource Center on Domestic Violence, there is a strong relationship between particular holidays and domestic violence reports, with New Year's Eve and New Year's Day having the most.