I have a huge pet peeve involving statements like this. Does this preface excuse the insensitivity of the statement that follows? I always believe in being honest but people freely and intentionally saying something that you know will be taking in an offensive way has always irked me.
When I hear “I don’t mean to be rude but…” or “Not to sound like a […] but” I hold my breath and my brain panics because I know that what I am about to hear will almost surely hurt my feelings.
I know that it may sound “hypocritical” coming from an Aspie who can at times come across as rude, but I definitely do not intentionally do it. Maybe I’m taking it too literally, but if not someone like me, then who else would?
Why not skip those statements and re-word what you were going to say? Just my two cents.